I cannot even begin to guess how many times my worries have turned toward the future since our diagnosis. There have been so many nights of tossing and turning as I worried and wondered, “Will Monkey ever…walk, talk, be potty trained, have seizures, learn to read, learn to count, tell me he loves me, enjoy school, learn to drive, get a diploma, go to college, live on his own, find love, have children, have grandchildren?” And those are just the highlights, in between are a thousand other smaller worries.
One of the most awful parts of living with fragile X is the not knowing. If only I had a crystal ball then maybe then I could be prepared for what the future holds, maybe I could worry less and enjoy more. Unfortunately, my crystal ball seems to be slow in coming. So I’ve muddled along, finding reassurance in the fact that others who have walked this path before me have survived the not knowing and built very nice lives for their kids. I know it is possible, everything is possible, and I focus so hard on that and try to push the worry away. I have had mixed success, to be honest, but I’m still trying.
This morning Eric was helping Monkey pick out clothes. Today was a non-uniform day at school which we all find ridiculously exciting. OK, honestly, I think Eric and I find it much more exciting than he does. Our little Monkey sees no problem whatsoever in wearing the same color pants and shirt every day, in fact, I am pretty sure that is a bit of fragile x heaven! He is not only allowed to but is required to1 wear the same thing day after day after day. Not today. Today he had to chose.
I was putting on my make-up and I heard the two of them discussing the t-shirt options. I have an unnatural love of t-shirts so Monkey has drawers positively stuffed with a variety of colors, characters and sayings. You might be shocked to hear that I lean markedly towards the positive message t-shirts2. There are no snarky t-shirts in those drawers though my attitude is snarky in general. I like nice, uplifting messages for my boy to wear as armor when he’s out in the world.
I half listened as I tried to get my eyeliner to cooperate3 and I heard Eric offering up shirts for consideration. “This one? How about this one? You pick!” Then there was the moment when the “Nope, nuffin’,” “Not work, too big” protests stopped.
“This one? You want to wear this one?” Eric asked.There was no answer I could hear but I heard Eric reading the shirt, “The future is…” and he paused to let Monkey read it.
Monkey hesitated a second and then said, excitedly, “Awesome!”
I nearly started crying and ruined my just applied eyeliner. The t-shirt actually says, “The Future is Mine.” but Monkey has shown us over and over again that there is way more going on in that little noggin than most people suspect. I can’t shake the feeling that maybe he is my crystal ball…that the future really is awesome…