Saturday, December 15, 2012

We are all heartbroken over Sandy Hook.

Last night I read The Boy a bedtime story. And about halfway through, tears started streaming down my face. I thought of all the parents in Newtown, Connecticut who couldn't read their baby a bedtime story.

"Why are you crying Mommy?" He asked. He was smiling and looking me in the eye.

He recognized I was upset and knew to ask the appropriate question. But I could not explain to him the depth of my grief. And on days of such tragedy, I am grateful for autism. The Boy does not understand the events of the day. He is blissfully unaware. 

I share my gratitude for autism on my Facebook page and one mother shared:
...we still need to prepare our children and ourselves. There is no social story out there to cover something like this...I just purchased a book writing my own social stories...sadly, I think my first story is going to be how our boys need to follow the teachers instructions during events like this for their safety.
The majority of the victims of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting were children - between the ages of 5 and 10 years old. My heart aches for all the families. No parent should ever outlive their child. But to lose a child in such a horrific senseless act of violence... 

How do we prepare ourselves for that? Why should we, as autism parents, have to write a social story about this? 

We are grieving nation. Our hearts are broken. We have lost babies.

Mahatma Ghandi once said, "A nation's greatness is measured by how it treats its [most vulnerable] members."

Who is more vulnerable than a child?

I think about The Boy. Who is especially vulnerable. Every morning I put him on the school bus. His school is out of the borough - about 25 miles away from home. And every day I hope, he has a good day. Now I hope he returns home.  
There are two conversations long overdue: Gun Control and Mental Health Care.

Because we have to protect our children. We need to protect them from gun violence. And when they are suffering from mental illness - they must have the necessary resources to help them.


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AutismWonderland - written by Lisa Quinones-Fontanez - is a personal blog chronicling a NYC family's journey with autism, while also sharing local resources for children/families with special needs.