Fall always feel like a time of great change! As summer comes to an end you can feel the anticipation in the air of all the wonderful things to come! This Fall brought even more changes than usual to my home.
My two sons have moved to Chicago to pursue their dreams and start their own adventures. They are both incredibly creative and talented (if I do say so myself) and are pursuing careers in the Arts.
My oldest, Jake, is pursuing a career in Special Effects Makeup. And my youngest, Noah, is a musician. They are so excited to be living on their own in a new city and going after what they want for themselves. I am excited for them and at the same time I'm sad that a chapter in my family story has come to an end.
As all of this was happening for me and my family I had the chance to help my friend Andrew with a big change that he was facing this Fall. He was starting High School! If you've read some of the past blogs that I've written, you are already familiar with Andrew. He is a 16 year old young man that I have been working with, as a therapist for children with autism, since he was 3 years old.
I traveled to Andrew's house the morning he started High School on a hot end of August day. My plan was to help him get ready for the day, he would then ride the bus and I would meet him at the school and support him throughout the day. I thought he might be anxious about going to a new, much bigger school than he was used to.
Much to my surprise, he was simply excited! He had prepared for the day the night before and was ready to go. As I watched him navigate that first day of High School, I noticed there were moments when he wasn't sure where he was going, or what was coming next. Yet the entire day he was smiling. He had been working toward this day for so long and it had finally arrived, and he was going to enjoy every minute.
At the end of the day, I reflected on watching Andrew face a new beginning and a new experience with so much joy and I came to the realization that I have so often entered new experiences with my family with a lot of resistance! As Jake and Noah have entered different stages of their lives I have tried so hard to slow down time. "Hit the brakes! I'm not ready for this!" But no matter how hard I hit the brakes, the changes happened and eventually I loved the new place our family ended up!
So this Fall I'm going to be like Andrew! I don't know for sure what's coming, it will be different than before, and I am going to believe that it's going to be wonderful. And when I feel like hitting the brakes, I'm going to picture Andrew on that first day of High School. My friend with autism who LOVES repetition and predictability, heading into the unknown with joy and positivity.
So instead of hitting the brakes, I'm throwing my arms in the air and enjoying the ride!