...My faith has helped me a great deal and I learned not to place blame for having an autistic child. I came to understand that God was not responsible for sickness and diseases and knowing this gave me a great sense of peace...

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I am going on a Journey

I am going on a journey,
Won't you come along?
I need someone to help me.
A person big and strong.

I'm walking on my journey
But my feet are very small.
Can you stand beside me,
And catch me if I fall?

At times when I can't keep up
With life and all its fears,
Can you put me on your shoulders
And wipe away the tears?

When the steps I take are not big enough
And it's hard for me to grow
I know I can depend on you
To let me take it slow.

I'm going on a journey,
Please, won't you walk with me?
I need someone who understands
The place where I should be.

I promise when the road is tough
And you want to turn back home.
I will hold your hand real tight,
So you won't feel so alone.

I'm going on a journey
I don't know where it ends,
But if we walk together,
We can always be best friends.

And when the journey's over
And we find where we should be.
I know that you will be so glad,
You took this path with me.

I'm going on a journey,
Please, won't you come along?
I need someone to guide me
A parent—big & strong.

Written by Sally Meyer



Blessed are you who take the time to listen to difficult speech,

If I persevere, I can be understood.

Blessed are you who never bid me to "hurry up"
Or take my tasks from me and do them for me.
For I often need time, rather than help.

Blessed are you who stand beside me as I enter new and untried ventures, Myself and You.

Blessed are you who ask for my help.
For my greatest need is to be needed.

Blessed are you who, with a smile encourage me to try once more.

Blessed are you who never remind me
That today I ask the same question twice.

Blessed are you who respect me and love me just as I am.

Author Unknown

sábado, 9 de enero de 2010

Like the Eagles

January 2007

If we learn the life of the eagles, we will realize that’s sometime we are like them in process of renovation.
When I read the life of these birds, I could find the following characteristics:
When the eagle ages (around 40 years), his beak it is long and Sharpe-pointed, it bows, pointing against the breast. His wings are old and ugly, and his feathers are heavy and they lose their vision. Fly is very difficult so the eagle has two options: to die or to face a painful process of renewal.

How is this process of renewal?
The eagles retired to a place far away in a nest near to rocks. While there, the eagle start striking his beak in the rock to breaking it, to lose it. Then, he must wait for the growth of a new one. With the new peak, the eagle will extract the old fingernails, until they grow again. Then, with the new fingernails, he will pluck out every feather on his body until is completely bare. He stay in this hiding place until he has grown new feathers, then is ready to fly again. This process of renewal lasted 150 days-5 month, after this time the eagles leaves the nest to live approximately 30 years more.

If we compare our life with the eagles, we can realize that some times we also have to pass for processes of renovation. There are moments in our life where we must be renewed. Some time, that does can be very painful, but God is always in this journey of renewal. If we read the bible in Psalms 103 said:

Psalm 103
1 Praise the LORD, O my soul; All my inmost being, praise his holy name. 2 Praise the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits- 3 who forgives all your sins and heals all your diseases, 4 who redeems your life from the pit and crowns you with love and compassion, 5 who satisfies your desires with good things so that your youth is renewed like the eagle's.

In the process of renewal, we have to see ourselves as God see us, with mercy and love, to take care of ourselves, like we care of others. In the time of the renewal God is with us, showing us the way, guiding our steps. We have to learn to leave the bad experienced in the past behind and always to be ready to begin again. Don’t be afraid of the changes and be encouraged with the new thing that God is preparing for us. God wants to clean us deeply and to purify our hearts. We are like a glass in the hands of the Potter and if we want to be good servants, we must search our heart every day to look if there is something that God disapprove.

Other physical attribute of the eagle
He has two set of eyelids. One set is for down on the earth, and the other is for looking into the sky and the sun. As a Christian, we have to considerate this, spiritually, we need to have two set of eyelids. We need to be in balance, be practical with the needs of the people, but, at the same time we must always looking up our heavenly father in heaven, to worship, love and depending of Him in everything we do.

domingo, 3 de enero de 2010


January 2006

My name is Cristina and I am a carer. I look after my 20 old son. His name is Cristobal and he was diagnosed with autism and compulsive behaviour at the age of 3.

A day with Cristobal can go from really good to really bad or the other way around in no time and without any warning. Some days are good, others with lots of changes in his moods and then there are the really bad ones when you need to give more than 100% of yourself to the point of exhaustion and come to realise that you need help and that you can’t live in isolation. You realise that you need people around you that can give a helping and supportive hand and perhaps help you in more practical ways.

Cristobal is highly dependant which means that he needs around the clock supervision 24 hours a day 7 days a week every single day of the year. Therefore my husband and I take turns in the care of our son and need to constantly communicate with each other as to what the other one is doing including going to the bathroom to make sure that Cris is supervised at all times.

Accepting the problem is to recognize that you need help. In order to help my son I had to come to know who I was as a person. I go everywhere with myself, my happiness and sorrows are always with me. My personality, the way I am and everything I stand for never leaves me. I don’t like aggressive people and when I am feeling angry and aggressive I can’t stand myself so I can’t expect the people around me to put up with me and understand me. So started by acknowledging the grief that comes with having a child with a disability, that my tears are normal, that when I am sad is normal, that when I suffer for my son is perfectly normal. What is not normal is trying to live a life that is not mine and try to go around like I have no problems and expect people to feel what I feel about my son; after all he is not theirs.

When I am sad and tired, I call upon the right people so that I can get advice for a temporary solution in terms of looking after Cris. We had to come to terms with the fact that we will always carry the burden in our hearts of looking after a disabled member of our family. It is not something that is going to go away just because the person may live elsewhere so we live the best way that we can with what we have. A good rest always comes in handy so that we can continue with our work but when you do things with a positive attitude and happiness in your heart things seem to improve.

There are services you can go to. At the beginning I didn’t use to use them much Cris was my son and I felt it was my responsibility to look after him alone, but these came a time when I decided I needed to be informed as much as I could.

I realised that having a break would give me the opportunity to relax and live my own life for a few moments without Cris. I use that time to nurture my relationship with my husband as well as for myself. Something that helps me a lot is to pray, I take time out, go to my room and I have a few minutes that I dedicate to prayer, it is something essential in my everyday life. My faith has helped me a great deal and I learned not to place blame for having an autistic child. I came to understand that God was not responsible for sickness and diseases and knowing this gave me a great sense of peace.

¨If they don’t come to me I go to them¨

Regular folk don’t know about the problems that people with disabilities are faced with. They need to be educated about it. I truly believe that if we ask for help from those who are around us, they are

willing to assist, but we need to tell them how to do this. For instance, I wanted my son to be around other people. Therefore I looked for places that were suitable and found Parameadows two years ago. A group of parents get together every second Wednesday of the month and have activities for people with disabilities 18 to 60 years of age. I feel that if doors don’t open we need to fight to have them open. That’s why I spoke to the church. I felt we needed to start a support group for parents, carers, families and friends of people with disabilities. We started last February and we meet the first Friday of the month. For now we are a small group although last meeting there were 21 people there, which filled my heart with joy. Thanks to these meetings, we have had the opportunity to talk, share and interact with people with disabilities about our issues. It has taken a lot for me to take this step and I thank God for making this possible. Seeing someone I love happy and accepted by others, like I see Cris at the meetings, gives me great satisfaction. We need to let others know about us and not hide away in our homes. Our society needs to be made aware of the other side of things and we mustn’t feel guilty or responsible for having children or family members with disabilities. We need to learn to live with it and still have quality of life.

It took a lot for me to go outside the four walls of my home, but it was the best decision I have ever made. I have learned to seek, give and receive help. We love our children and family members who are disabled because they are our own, not because of their disability, but I realised that we are not alone in our grief and when I see other parents suffering and hiding away in their homes, cutting all ties with the rest of the world because they can’t face it, it makes me extremely sad because I don’t think they realise that their lives would probably be easier if they opened their doors and hearts and let it all out. Help doesn’t come to us; we need to look for it but we need to be honest about our needs and recognise our limits. If one door doesn’t open don’t worry. Keep knocking on others until you get what you need. Some people may not respond the way we want to, but we are the ones who need to take the first step.

January 2010

Our son Cris is not living with us since September 2006.