When I first started my blog, I named it “Johnny’s Spirit” after my son’s nickname. While I’ve shared the story behind his nickname, I don’t believe I’ve ever explained why I chose that name for my blog.
As a parent of an autistic child, one of my biggest concerns is protecting my son’s spirit. His being, his essence, the part of him that you can’t describe but only feel. It’s what makes him who he is.
The world we live in was not built for him. People may try to push him into a mold that he doesn’t fit into, and I worry that this will slowly kill his spirit. As a parent, I want to protect it with all my might.
However, it’s a difficult balance to strike. I need to help my son grow and learn, but at the same time, I need to keep him safe.
He needs to have the life skills to take care of himself as much as he can, and to build relationships. He also deserves to enjoy the beauty that the world has to offer.
As his parents, every decision we make about schooling, therapy, and medication is made with the intention of protecting our son’s spirit.
I worry about how my choices may affect who he truly is, and I must constantly remind myself not to make him feel like he has to hide who he is.
Finding a balance between safety, love, and freedom is a constant challenge, but it’s one that we face every day.
As my son grows older, I continue to see the world through his eyes and learn from him.
I hope that by sharing our journey, I can help others understand the importance of protecting the spirits of those who don’t fit into society’s mold.
Every child deserves to be loved and accepted for who they are, and it’s up to us as parents to ensure that their spirits are protected.