I was completing forms for Sydney and was asked to list her friends. Immediately I wrote down Harrison, he counts right? Then I asked Syd who were her friends and she named kids from the school and the football team🤔. Then I remembered that some of the football players are peer mentors in her class.
Syd has a friend at cheerleading but we haven’t exchanged numbers so they can get together. Am I a bad mom? I’m not hustling to find play date activities for either of my kids? Am I antisocial?
Last week Sydney and I were out at an event. We ran into someone that knows our family well. This person was with other typical peers and parents and it was obvious that it was okay to say hello to us but she never asked us to join them. Was it me? Was it Autism?
My first reaction was to leave because I admit it hurt and Syd even looked a little sad too. We decided to hang out together like we always do and enjoy ourselves. This is our reality we won’t always be accepted or included. The mindset of some people will never change. In their minds it’s okay to be inclusive behind closed doors just not out in public with their friends.
I guess I really shouldn’t be shocked because this same individual bailed on us at the last minute when we all had concert tickets together. She wanted to go to the concert with her typical friends instead.
What did I learn? I learned that I don’t want to be around someone that is fake and phony and who really doesn’t accept Syd. I learned that for every negative or ignorant person I come across. God will also bring people into our lives that love us for who we are.
I also learned that as I watch my second graders talk about the excitement of being peer buddies and participating in Special Olympics that you can’t teach that mindset. It is something that is a part of them and they love what they do.
Although the experience was tough for me to process, I survived like I always do and I will continue to advocate for Syd.