My son doesn’t even know that this Sunday is Mother’s Day.
His cognitive challenges and developmental disabilities preclude him from even understanding what Mother’s Day is all about.
So, by himself, there won’t be any presentation of gifts to his mom. There won’t be any special card he picked out for the occasion. There won’t be a handmade present or even a “Happy Mother’s Day” comment, since he is non-verbal as well.
Mother’s Day to him will just be like every other day.
He will wake up at 4:00am as usual because he has no concept of time and thinks that since he woke up, it’s time for everyone to rise. So his mom will get up with him to change him, take him a favorite toy or start a favorite video.
Many times she will also have to change his sheets in the night as well.
He is on a very special diet with no casein, no glutens, no soy, and no processed foods at all. So she will begin the process of not just cooking his breakfast, but also cooking his lunch and dinner as well.
She prepares his medications for the day. She has to put his pills into tiny capsules for him, because he won’t swallow pills. Then she pulls out clothes for him, cleans him up, and dresses him.
As she feeds him breakfast, she will pray over him and their day. It’s a holy moment. They pray for protection, blessing, safety and God’s favor on his life. They pray for his teachers, his classroom helpers and therapists, family members, and a long list of people who haven’t been introduced to Jesus yet.
She speaks affirmation and encouragement over Jon Alex telling him how proud she is of him, and how glad she is that he is her son.
Next she drives him to school and goes to work herself, ministering to and encouraging other moms of special needs children like herself all day long.
Afternoons after school are full of doctor’s appointments, therapies, laundry, household chores, ministry obligations, and tending to his every need.
He requires 24/7 care in all things so he can’t just be left to entertain himself for very long at all. He constantly needs her attention for even the smallest things.
She swings him in his platform swing, prepares our dinner, and holds everything together until I get home from work to help.
While I feed him his dinner, she eats hers standing up because she is multi-tasking, simultaneously doing other things. Tonight she is trying to find shoes that will fit over his braces online and working on an upcoming event at the same time. Her allotted dinnertime is about 7-8 minutes.
As I do his nighttime swinging time with him, she does the dishes and cleans the kitchen.
Next she runs his bath (his favorite activity of the day), makes sure the bath lift is in working order, and gets his clothes ready for the next day.
For the next 45 minutes, as he lays in the bath, she will sing to him. Over and over she will sing his favorite songs, as he lies there with the most content happiest smile on his face.
She dresses him for bed and walks him to the edge of his bed, praying softly over him the whole time.
That’s when it happens.
That’s the moment you just can’t miss.
That’s the moment when God smiles, and I tear up.
Just before he lies down, he will throw his arms around her neck. He will tilt his head to the side. And very gently, with a toothy grin on his face, he leans in and he kisses his mother on the cheek.
Every night ends with a kiss on her cheek.
Because every day is Mother’s Day to my son Jon Alex
Neither one of them needs a card to prove it.