I had no idea when I gave birth to my son that one day he would develop a superpower. He was like any other kid, but by far the cutest one I’d ever seen. For six months, I enjoyed cuddling with him and gazing into his beautiful blue eyes. Then, everything started to change as he ventured off into a world of his own. Two and half years later we learned that he was autistic.
Although he’s 14 now, he still struggles with forming complete sentences and speaking loud enough for people to hear him. But, he can talk and he does it well…with me. He’s very quiet and shy. So quiet in fact, that at one point, he went half a year in middle school before his teachers learned that he could speak. Despite his reserved nature, he is very smart. Unfortunately, not many people know this because he’s not one to show them. He amazes me constantly. I just wish others could see how amazing he is.
He also has a superpower.
I’ve noticed over the years that his superpower is growing in strength. He can walk right past people and they can’t see him. Someone can walk by, shake my hand and continue on right past my son as if he’s not there. It’s the craziest thing.
He has the superpower of becoming invisible!
For instance, last night we were having dinner with 8 people, including myself. We were at the restaurant for about two hours. He was completely invisible for the first hour and 40 minutes to everyone but me. How does he do that? No one noticed him sitting there.
No one saw him when he got up to revisit the buffet and no one saw him when he sat back down. It was like he wasn’t there. There were even times during dinner when others at the table would play and talk to the 8 year old who was there also. My son would watch them as they all interacted, laughing and carrying on. Yet still no one saw him, even as the tears welled up in his eyes.
He uses this power everywhere he goes. At home, school, in the car, at the grocery store. Only on select people does his power fail to work. Me, of course and then a few others, but none of them does he see every day.
The bad part about superpowers is that sometimes people don’t want to have them. They want to be like everyone else. Their superpower makes them feel separated and different. It causes them to feel left out.
He’s a person just like everyone else. He may not be what people would expect. He may not speak the way others do. He may not laugh at jokes like you and I. He may not tell his own or interact in the way people are used to. But, he’s still a person. He has feelings. He has a heart that can be broken. I wish I could help him get rid of that superpower. It’s a miserable superpower to have.
I am so sorry my sweet boy, that people don’t see you. You have no idea how much it breaks my heart. You are such a wonderful, bright young man with so much potential. You have a bigger heart than anyone I know. Don’t let people destroy you. Don’t let them ruin your self esteem. Stand tall and know that you are great. Know that you have qualities that other people only wish that they could have. You have a pure heart. Unlike them, you are not out to hurt a single soul. You only wish to love and to make others happy. Be you, my sweet boy. If they don’t see you or accept you, they are the ones missing out, not you.
No one should be treated as if they are invisible.