I appreciate your desire to be recognized for your achievements, rather than your inabilities.
I value your right to embrace yourself "just as you are."
I respect and admire your self-confidence.
I understand that you are Zen with the way things are.
I despise your judgmental words, striking at organizations designed to foster research and find a cure for those of us who desperately yearn for one.
I loathe your need to ridicule a mother's pain, making herself vulnerable and revealing the ache that she feels each time she sees her child struggle to communicate with others, when the only sounds that come from his mouth resemble nothing akin to the English language.
I dare you to walk a day in our shoes and then look us in the eyes and tell us that our children's autism is a blessing rather than a curse.
This is not war we should wage on one another.
This is a war fought by those of us who want better for our children, those of us who know they will not always come in seven-year old packages, those of us who struggle with picturing the future but know that to do so is the only way to give our children a fighting chance at a reasonably comfortable and independent life.
If you can type on a computer and spew hate-filled words, then you have nothing in common with my son.
If you can cross the street when the light turns green instead of running into oncoming traffic because you have no concept of death or pain or safety, then you have nothing in common with my son.
If you can fix yourself a sandwich, read the newspaper, pee standing up, and ride a bike down the street, then you have nothing in common with my son.
This is not just about YOU.
This is about protecting, defending, and advocating on behalf of those who can not do so for themselves.
This is about trying to build a community of support for those of us who felt sommersault kicks and dreamed big dreams and now grieve that our children have such an uphill road ahead.
This is about feeling free to express pain and hope and goals and treatments without feeling like someone (such as YOURSELF) is going to berate us or question our dedication as parents because we refuse to use our children as guinea pigs or because some diet didn't do the trick.
This has NOTHING to do with not loving our children for who they are, for not appreciating the wide smiles, the twinkling eyes, the unexpected cuddles, the fierce determination and curiosity they posess.
This is about not settling for a life filled with low muscle tone and dangerous stims and the inability to say "Mommy, my tummy hurts."
Because I'll be damned if I sit back and let Autism run the show.
Now sit down and do some research.
Read a book.
Call a friend.
Do some laundry.
Ask for help.
Cook a meal.
Take a hike.
Since you can.