Monday, May 18, 2009

Wish vs Belief

My husband Hoopdaddy seems discouraged. He's believed from the "Start-up" that Son-Rise works…for other people's kids. Hoopdaddy came back from the startup three years ago and said, "This will work if Eric wants it to work." I said, "It's going to work for Eric."

It seems funny now, but I assumed three years ago that because I am a Wile E. Coyote, super-over-achiever, that we would run the best, most complete, and fastest Son-Rise Program in the history of Son-Rise Programs. If typical programs run maybe 3 to 7 years, then surely we would be done in just a year or even 18-months? Maybe I thought I could pull Eric out of his autism by the sheer force of my will. Maybe I just underestimated all that I would have an opportunity to learn during these first three years in Eric's program.

Now I see Eric's Son-Rise Program as a lifetime plan. Even if Eric emerged from his autism diagnosis tomorrow, we would still use the Son-Rise attitudes and beliefs to relate to him. Beliefs like the belief that he's perfect as he is, that what's important to us is building a relationship of unconditional love and trust, that a want is actually a more powerful and effective motivator than a need. Beliefs that have poured out from the playroom into the rest of our lives as we try to relate to each other and everyone we meet as if it's all happening in the playroom. (Actually, if I stop and think about it, everything I do is happening in one really big, planet-sized playroom.)

Recently, Hoopdaddy has been feeling pressure as Eric has been coming out of a mode. (We're still building language frequency back up from the mode.) Eric's language (which, before the mode, were 5-7 word sentences and 1-2 conversation loops outside of the playroom) dropped off to almost no language, in or out of the playroom. I thought it was physical stress to Eric because of homeopathic treatments we started at about the same time. I didn't worry about the reduction in word count because we were getting really marvelous eye contact and continued communication with pointing and gestures, and even once a day or so, a really appropriate and spontaneous noun. But Hoopdaddy was frustrated and worried that, "Eric's language is just like it was year ago" and I protested, "No he's not. He's interacting with us and communicating. He's happy. He's smiling at us and building relationships. He's just not talking right now."

Sometimes I wish I could just force Hoopdaddy to see what I see—progress. Maybe lumpy and inconsistent but definitely progress. Sometimes I catch myself thinking that I could "fix" this by making Hoopdaddy see what I see. I get that it's not very Option-y to want to force my belief on Hoopdaddy. My other choice is to get excited that the more uncomfortable Hoopdaddy gets with whether Eric will make progress, the closer he gets to changing a fear about what's really possible. We could change a need into a want, instead wanting Eric to be the best and most complete version of himself that's possible. I think Hoopdaddy could enjoy the Son-Rise process even more than he does if he would look at that fear. I said to him last week, "I wish you believed Eric was going to emerge from his autism."

He said, "I wish I believed it, too."

Hi Angie! What if you just keep on modeling what you want. "Be what you want to see in the world." And trust the Hoopsterpoppa to find his way. Thanks so much for using this blog and sharing your thoughts with us.

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