It’s only been a short period of time that I’ve stood beside Kanen in this autism journey—6 months ago to be exact is when I heard the official words that changed my world. I don’t know what it is about those words that find a way into a mother’s soul and crushes her spirt but they do. I think mainly because we know this world is not designed for different. It’s simply not made for our child.

During the grieving process you might find your self slipping into the darkness that surrounds any diagnosis. Praying for a light at the end of the tunnel. Before autism changed my world, I was motivated. I was selfish. I was everything you would expect a young 25 year old girl to be. And overnight I knew I had to grow up far beyond the years of my peers.

It was almost instantly that I stopped relating to girls’ night out or “Sunday Funday’s.” While my friends were out living their best lives, my life suddenly felt like I was parachuted into the middle of a dark jungle, expected to walk down a path I’ve never seen before. With no directions, no map, no flashlight, and definitely no tour guide.

Along the voyage I learned I wasn’t alone. I found other mom’s in the dark. And they did something remarkable. Life changing even. They took a seat right beside me. Maybe they sat for only a moment, maybe it’s was for a few days, or a week, or a month. “I will sit in the dark with you, for as long as you need. Whenever you need” they said.

I’ve learned life will throw you curveballs you were never prepared to bat up for. And when they hit they’ll leave bruises that might take a lifetime to heal. It’s okay to cry, be angry, mad, sad, frustrated, and confused. To feel like you’re lost in the dark. Feel all the feels, you’re human too, remember that. But just know you’re never alone. I’ll always be here to take a seat with you. For as long as you need or whenever you need.