of faith, slingshots, and a clarinet

Please, please, PLEASE read THIS before you continue.

I’m begging. 


First there was this …

Screen shot 2013-05-31 at 5.57.57 AM

Screen shot 2013-05-31 at 6.11.17 AM

Why do I always notice the typos once it’s too late to fix them?

Ah well. I assume you don’t come here to bask in my editing skills. Moving on. 

And then there was this …

Screen shot 2013-05-31 at 5.57.21 AM

Screen shot 2013-05-31 at 6.11.00 AM

But in between, there was this …


I love that her body looks still, but if you look closely, you see that her hand is moving too fast for the camera.

That. Is. Her.


Concentrating. No one said this would be easy.



And then, well, you already know about this ..


The second that she stepped off the stage, she handed me the scarf and the pony tail holder


Because the show was over.



Brooke went back to school and we headed for home.

But first, there was this ..

Screen shot 2013-05-31 at 5.56.11 AM

Three different moms.
Seeing my girl.
Recognizing what it took.
Getting it.
Celebrating her progress.
Celebrating her.

“ … it will give parents faith and sometimes you need that.”

I forgot.

She didn’t.

The thing that sometimes, in the middle of the day-to-day, is easiest to lose. The thing that in the day-to-day, we really need the most.


Thank you, Ms J.

Thank you.


Ed note: And a special thanks to Grammy and Grandpa DD who made the trip all the way from Connecticut to attend the concert at Brooke’s invitation. It meant the world to her that you were there.
Oh, and P.S.
This …
Screen shot 2013-05-31 at 6.31.44 AM
I forgot.
She didn’t.

22 thoughts on “of faith, slingshots, and a clarinet

  1. Brooke is an incredible child. It was our honor to be there and witness her triumphs and her joy.

    We would not have missed it for anything.

    Love you,

  2. I always love your blogs and your mom’s comments. She is truly a supportive mom and grandmom. Brooke, Katie, Luau, and you are SOOOOO lucky!

  3. This is amazing! Congrats to Brooke for her concert! One of the reasons I read your blog every day is because it gives me HOPE and FAITH. The other reason is that it has been amazing to watch your evolution as a mom, and an advocate. You have changed the way I see Autism. You have influenced so much, how I face the day to day and how i advocate for MY girl. I’m so thankful for that. It’s helped me, too. To see that it’s ok. That SHE’s ok. While there is stil SO much work to be done, I know i look at my girl in a different light. I do my best to respect her neurology, and give her oodles of self confidence.
    The pics of the concert are a testament to your whole family, and to the obvious self confidence you have instilled in your girl.
    So, thank you for sharing your journey with us 🙂 xoxo

  4. the “experts” do always say there is regression before big leaps so there you a go, a visual for it. and i loves visuals

  5. Such a proud moment! MacKenzie was in a play last week, I got goosebumps watching her. And when they sang, I could hear her voice through everyone else.I think our kids give us the perspective to enjoy these moments more!

  6. look at her go! and recently the dance recital, just so many amazing things happening. super brooke is on the loose. the world has no idea what’s coming.

  7. Wow! Ok. That sling shot analogy was just what I needed. Our oldest would go through a week of crazy baby right before hitting every milestone. Just when I was wondering how I was going to survive, he’d crawl, talk, or perform some other baby miracle. Now he is 17. And that sling shot is going back mighty far. And I’m wondering how I’m going to survive. We are on the verge of the biggest milestone yet, the one that doesn’t really include or involve us as parents, yet couldn’t have happened without us. So, thank you for reminding me that good things are ahead. And judging from the tension of this shot, it will be grand. Congrats to Brooke on understanding what a concert is truly about….joy.

  8. Oh J, where to start? A scarf and a pony tail? That’s all kinds of amazing just on its own.

    Poise. What I see is poise and pride. How wonderful for her to feel such joy and accomplishment. Thrilled for her!

  9. Be still my heart (I haven’t used that one in a while but it is so applicable!). Thank you for bringing me joy yesterday and this morning with this. I am not a crier but have moist eyes!

  10. As always….you remind me to never lose sight of the future and we WILL arrive there on the wings of hope and faith.
    As you do…and will.

  11. That is a beautiful story. I love your blog and glad you share your face book stuff on it because I have stopped using Facebook so I don’t get those updates anymore. You are an amazing mom and person and I’m so happy you are there to remind us all to keep the faith!

  12. Yes, so much of this journey is about faith. I love her triumphant stance at the end! And the other parents commenting – I always get emotional over that too. Love to you, my friend.

  13. Oh how I love being a witness to your beautiful daughters never ending transformation!! She truly is such an inspiration…..thank you again for sharing a little of her with all of us!!

  14. She is beautiful and accomplished because she is loved by people who learned how to “get her” and apply that love and sensitivity to teaching her.
    Remember we learn on fragmented fronts not just across the board.
    You are all so loved.

  15. As a band director, I loved this. I have kids with autism every year, and they do so well, despite what others may expect. 53 kids in a room (and mine don’t often have parapros with them, either!), and they work so hard and do an awesome job! Congrats to Brooke, and of course to you!

    And I LOVE your slingshot analogy! ❤

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