Mateo woke very early in the morning and found himself alone in his room. Maya had a bad dream and had joined us in our room.
“MAMA!! MOM!!!” he called from his bed. I got up and crawled into bed with him to keep him company.
I woke to him singing a song I didn’t recognize. He often has many songs flowing through his head. They learn a lot in Preschool and he refuses to sing in class, but knows each song by heart. He cuddled up to me as I stirred. And he began to sing a song that he made up.
“I love you mamaaaaaa. I love you. I love you mamaaaaaa.” He repeated as he stroke my back.
Often you hear that children with Autism lack compassion or the ability to show it. I know that many parents wait for the day for their child to utter those words. I love you. And my heart goes out to them. I think many children show their love in many ways. But the fact that Mateo can sing a song to show his love is beyond words for me. There are no words to describe how it makes me feel.
He is a very compassionate boy. Today he found a gnat on the window. Carefully and delicately, he coerced the gnat onto his hand and let it crawl around, feeling it tickle his palm. He smiled as the gnat made its way onto his fingers.
I asked him, “What did you find?” He just stared at it. “A bug?” I asked. “A bug” he replied. He let it crawl onto Maya’s fingers. “It tickles” She laughed.
How many other 5 year old boys would smash that little bug without a thought? Not Mateo, he wanted to enjoy it and interact with it. He wanted to see what that little bug would do. And eventually it flew off of his fingers. My imaginative daughter insists the gnat waved at Mateo before flying away. That may be the result of way too many Disney/Pixar movies .
Yesterday at Preschool he had another breakthrough. During his share time the teacher asked if he wanted questions from friends. He answered yes and for the first time his teacher asked him to chose his friends. She usually would call on them for Mateo. Hands went up eagerly. He called on his first friend, saying his name and pointing directly at him. I was blown away! Then he did it three more times, each time calling on the students in his class.
Wow, I guess he is ready for Kindergarten. I guess I am the one who is not.