Monday, May 25, 2009

Give Your Children a Big Hug!

Something incredibly touching happened Saturday morning that I've hummed & hawed about whether I should write about publicly. But I've had nothing but a positive reaction from the close friends I've shared it with so I don't see any harm in doing so.

As I wrote about last week, my charity, BC Digital Divide, recently received a large donation of used computer equipment from a corporate donor of ours. This has reinvigorated the organization and our techs are busily refurbishing the equipment to be donated to families in the near future.

On Saturday my mom & I drove to 3 locations to donate computers to the recipients therein. The last one was to the home of an 8 year old autistic boy. His mom met us at the door and welcomed us in. We were then introduced to her son. Physically he looked completely normal and if you didn't know otherwise, you'd think that he was just somewhat shy. The fact is though that he is unable to speak, not because of any problems with his vocal cords but because his brain is unable to perform the function of speech. So all he can muster are occasional one-syllable outbursts.

Seeing others around him talk effortlessly, he gets incredibly frustrated and upset.

We gave them an old laptop my mom had been using since 2002. Though it's ancient compared to today's technology, it was a worth a million dollars to that young man. For it will open up an entirely new world to him, and who knows where that will take him and his future learning.

The boy's mom insisted on giving my mom a big hug and then gave her a card with this letter:

When I walked down the path to the car, I immediately thought of all the little kids I know and how they all appear to be completely normal functioning children. Their biggest daily challenge is figuring out how they can eat less vegetables and more dessert.

If you are so blessed to have such children of your own, please give them a big hug the next time you see them. And realize how incredibly fortunate you are too!

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