There is an Election Today?

Today once again I was truly drawn to my community. In the early crisp hours of the morning I dropped my oldest four at the bus and decided to go vote. I didn't want to get caught up in the goings and comings of the day and forget because I have a theory if you don't vote, you don't have the right to complain. So I voted.

I headed into the parking lot of what is a usually empty voting location to be met with people driving in and out to make their voices heard. The parking lots were full and parking was only available on the grass. I had never seen it like this and though I questioned myself for bringing sweet Serrie with me, I decided to make a go of it. I had the right to vote too.

As we got just inside the door she began to smile and people made light of her being there. "She's not old enough to vote is she?" I giggled as I noted she's probably a better candidate than some. Then we watched as she found candles shaped as teddy bears and methodically counted them. "1, 2, 3, 4, 5". And then number 5 somehow made it into her sweet hands and I let it go. She carried it and giggled all the way to the midway point of the line. Everyone was jovial and happy and it was good to see so many out to register their selection.

Then it happened. A sign. "NO ADMITTANCE EXCEPT AUTHORIZED PERSONNEL". Apparently Seraphina had some confusion over her own authorization and decided she needed to go take a peek out the window. She insisted that she had to go to the "lookout"...thanks Paw Patrol. From that moment I was in autism mom mode. See, I have decided there is mom mode and autism mom mode. Mom mode is when she's on typical behavior but when she flips and hits autism behavior I am having to use all the powers I have to work with her. Patiently. With kindness. Understanding that not everyone will be amused or understand what we are dealing with. I have also learned the more you educate, the more others will react in a kind manner. So I picked her up and explained she couldn't go there. She flailed. She shook and she screamed. She blew raspberries as I gently covered her mouth and most people around us laughed with good nature. One even said "at least she's the entertainment". And that she was. By the time we arrived to check in, I was sweaty. I was scratched. I was exhausted but I wouldn't change a thing.

See, no one said anything unkind. The woman behind me told me her son was also autistic...us "autism moms" can spot those kids from a mile away. And I came to the realization that Serrie has given me so much two personal gifts are that of being more patient and humbled.

There is an election today and someone will win. Someone will lose. People will be happy, angry, sad, scared or feel a host of emotions but today on election day, I was reminded how blessed I am to be Seraphina's mom and to help her walk this journey of life. Autism diagnosis and all.

P.S. Thanks to all you amazing residents who said not one unkind thing about her or to me about her. I am grateful.

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