Sometimes, it happens. Sometimes, it turns out that your desired, beloved, very sweet and beautiful baby doesn’t grow well. You start noticing problems that scare you. So run to hospitals, thousands of hospitals, until you reach your terrified verdict: your son is suffering from a rare disease, so rare, unknown, unspeakable, for which there is no cure at all.
Then, your pain starts and it’s a grief without name, whom only a mom like you could understand.
Just a question, hammering within your mind, every day: Why? You keep asking to yourself. Again and again. Why has my son to suffer in this way? Why my daughter cannot have a simple, normal life? Why an innocent baby has to go through such this pain? What is the meaning of a such tough life, which often ends early?
You need an answer and you try looking for it by questioning wise men, philosophers, clergy men, poets and novelists, but in vain. At least, I have never found it.
For this reason, I was surprised and encouraged by the end of a book talking about autism. “Three white stones” writed by Dr Lisa Genova, an american neuropsychiatrist.
Lisa is the mom of a child who suffered from a serious kind of autism (he could not even speak ) which made him die just at 8. She was consumed with working out the meaning of such a different and difficult life, until the answer came from her baby in a dream:
“Dear mom, you already have all the answers you are looking for within your heart. Your heart knows, but your mind doesn’t want to. I was not there to do the things you, before I was born, dreamt and thought I would have done. Normal things everybody does. I was there just to be there and autism was what got me. Even if my life was very tough, I was happy of being me.
But there is another reason why I was there: it is you. I came to teach you how to love. Most people love with caution, up to a point, seeing what happens. When our beloved person betrays or disappoints or abandons us, we stop loving her, to protect our fragile hearts. And sometimes happens that we start hating too. Most people love under condition, because they are not required to love with all their heart. They partially love, making a living.
My illness was my gift for you. It would not let me behave like everybody does, but you loved me the same. Loving me and accepting me with all your heart made you grow. You loved me through pain and disappointment, fear and frustration, even sadness, despite the fact I was not able to show you my love back.
You wholeheartedly loved me. So now you know what unconditioned love is”.
That is the reason why we all are here. To wholeheartedly love.
That is the gift every special son gave to us to enlight our life.
LUISA PERRERO PORZIO