spread hope like fire

I was at the gym this week thinking about Zane. Gathering all I have been learning in my head. Sorting it all out. While my feet were releasing the stress of it out through the soles of my feet. Picking up the pace, turning up the number from 3 to 4.5 on the treadmill, letting it carry me into a rapid turning over from one foot to the other. Letting the confusion drip out with sweat off my forehead, down the sides of my face.

This video came on. Angels and Airwaves' Secret Crowds. It was making me wonder what this is like for him. Wonder how frustrating it must be in his world to have triggers or things that link directly to those challenges, but he doesn't really understand or have the ability to express it. The sensory integration part of it. Something as simple as the kind of socks he has on. Or the amount of noise in the room. Or fluorescent lighting. A fabric. Or a new face. A million variables to be tested out and considered that will help him in his world to get a little more in control of himself.

So this video made me reflect back on all the images I have of him. I caught them with my camera and they were all flooding through my mind with the beat of this song. Of all those obsessive door-opening and exaggerated door handle / hinge-watching moments I didn't see so well. All the excessive chewing on books and toys and shirts I overlooked. All the repeated phrases, the rhythmic speaking I didn't hear. The unconnected reactions to everyday life that didn't match the norm. His angry fist with a friendly hello with a stranger in a store. Outrageous crying with the arrival to a birthday party. His little moments of confused behavior I couldn't place or translate for so long now. And how on the inside it made sense to him and I just stood there unable to get it. Still unable to get it fully. But we will.

We are starting to collect our people, the ones that will help us blend him into society as he grows. The people who will march with our family through his life. From family, neighborhood, school, church, therapists, doctors, strangers with big hearts, and others all gathering to be Zane's secret crowd. Backing him and loving him while he learns and changes and develops into the man he will one day become. He will have his own world, we'll just be more a part of it and him a part of ours. Now that we know him better. And as we work towards translating the kinks; help him smooth them out. Celebrating every achievement along the way. And catapulting, also, those gifts he already has of excelling skill into the sky all the while.

I think this song just became my anthem for raising this boy of mine.