Dear Kind Man In The Doctor’s Office Waiting Room,
I liked you right when we walked in.
I was flustered today.
I don’t usually bring my son to my doctor’s appointments.
I think you knew that.
You greeted us both with kind eyes and a gentle spirit.
You watched us with curiosity and the peace of someone who knows.
As my son made his way around the room, beeping and singing and hopping and waving his fingers, your mouth pulled itself upward into a contented smile.
You had seen this all before.
You asked if my son has special needs.
I liked the warmth in your question.
It didn’t surprise me when you said your youngest is autistic too.
When you told me that he is now eighteen, I wanted to sit and talk to you.
I wanted to know what you know and I wanted to congratulate you on getting this far with kind eyes and a gentle spirit.
I’ve wasted so much time in doctor’s office waiting rooms, wishing away the minutes until the nurse opens that door and calls my name.
Today, the door opened a lifetime too soon.
You and I had just started chatting and I wanted to continue.
The interruption caught me off guard and I left our conversation hanging uncomfortably incomplete.
I hope you understood and took no offense from it.
I suspect you are used to odd conversations, missed moments and unfinished business, much like I am.
A few minutes later, as my wait continued behind a closed door, my son ran his hand along the smooth edge of the metal mini blinds and said “window is music.”
His elegant little fingers had squeaked a lovely sound from the blinds.
It made him smile and I wished for a moment that you had been there too.
In the course of my parenting, I occasionally meet people who instantly compel me to know more, to ask questions, to learn, to get support, to lend support and maybe even to offer answers of my own.
You could be one of those people and there is very little chance that my family and I will ever know anything more about you.
For whatever it’s worth, you made a difference in my life today.
You cheered a gloomy moment and lightened a heavy week.
I’ll bet your son is just like you.
a late evening P.S. to Dear Husband –
I have your party cheese, there were fireworks at the high school tonight and your son yanked out another tooth. I know this probably doesn’t hold a candle to Michael’s bachelor party weekend, but I wanted you to know. 😀
Love, The Wife.