My son told me the other day that he realized that he thinks differently from other kids. I told him that is what makes him special and unique.
You see, Munchie Boy has been diagnosed with Pervasive Developmental Delay, Not Otherwise Specified. PDD-NOS for short. This is on the autism spectrum. When I had him tested, years ago, his score was 10. One had to have a minimum score of 10 to be considered on the autism spectrum. His scores came from the following traits: being literal, no imaginative play, not looking someone in the eye, enjoying spinning/running in circles and some physical delays in speech, fine and gross motor skills. There were other "issues" but these were just the highlights.
Although, to this day, he remains quite literal he has definitely come full circle in the other categories. He is very clever and tests high on the Iowa Basics. He has an unusual wit and humor that endears all who come to know him. His imagination is quite active albeit unique. He will look you in the eye while speaking (although maintaining eye contact is still an issue) and he no longer runs/spins in circles. He has, however, become very focused and fascinated by all things Nintendo! He can tell you the history of Nintendo, about the "war" between Nintendo and Sega, when new games will be coming out, and all about the new games prior to their release. He knows his way around all things high tech, which is fortunate because he can help me out when it's time to figure out how to turn on the TV! (please refer to any of Mr. Sister's guest posts and you'll see why this is quite a feat!)
Why the progress? I truly think homeschooling helped him tremendously. He has been able to receive one on one attention and is doing quite well in all subjects. I also believe that having him be involved on the swim team has helped with his physical developmental delays (core strength/fine and gross motor skills).
The Munch Meister also aims to please which leads me to another way in which he is different. He will do exactly what is asked of him. Not more, not less. Maybe that's part of his literal way of thinking but it is truly helpful that I can always count on him.
Munch is also very innocent. His stuffed animals still have a place of honor on his bed. He is the biggest fan of Santa Claus, EVER. (I'm a big fan of Ol' St. Nick myself!) This innocence is refreshing in this day and age of cynicism and violence.
Yes, Munch. You do think different and that is what makes you so very special. Never be afraid to be you for you are just who God intended you to be.
On a side note: Munchie will be entering the 6th grade next year. I am seriously considering allowing him to attend the charter school big sis goes to (it's K-12). He has asked about bullies (he remembers some not so good times at the public school) and I fear the loss of innocence and wonder he possesses. It's a big decision and one in which I will have to pray about.