1:176 Million-Those were the odds of winning the lottery. You were more likely to be killed by a vending machine than winning the last lottery.
1:13 Million-Those are the odds that you will become an Astronaut. (so you’re saying there’s a chance…)
1:88-The odds that you will be born with Autism. Considering your perspective those are either great odds or horrible chances. (Boys are 5 times more likely to have autism than girls) Jackson Orian Bachman has autism.
We didn’t have the first two happen, but I guess you could say our family won a lottery. I woke up this morning with a sense of excitement. I wanted to wish Jackson a happy Autism day, but I knew he wouldn’t totally understand. Though I am sure he would love a present none the less that also isn’t the thing that you do on the this day.
I say all this not to make light of Autism, but rather to celebrate the joy and diversity in each person who has autism. Sure there is difficulty, and it is different for each person and family. For our son he is considered “high functioning” which means we can talk to him. It means he will probably graduate high school and even college. He will probably have a job and a future that he chooses for himself. We are blessed to have the child that we have. Not because of what he can and can’t do, but rather because of who he is. He is a wonderful addition to our family and regardless of what he was able to do we would love him.
That being said, my heart breaks for all those who struggle with Autism. I didn’t notice it until I saw this world through the eyes of a boy who lives life a little differently. The world is loud, it changes quickly, people are unkind and don’t understand. But in the pain and fear of the unknown, I have watched a child be more brave than I ever could have.
So we choose to celebrate. We are so excited for things like Surfers Healing. They are an amazing organization we will participate in this summer. Jackson loves Pretend City and they have a monthly night for kids with Autism. They orchestrate the night for them and their families. We go blue for today, and the week, and the month of April. We are still learning about other organizations that love, understand, and support Autism and Jackson, but for now we love these!
From this point I will borrow from my wife’s post today. She captured it perfectly and you can read the rest of it here.