People see me I’m a challenge to your balance
I’m over your heads how I confound you
And astound you
To know I must be one of the wonders
They say I must be one of the wonders
Of God’s own creation
And as far as they see, they can offer
Ooo, I believe, fate, fate smiled
And destiny laughed as she came to my cradle
Know this child will be able
Laughed as she came to my mother
Know this child will not suffer
Laughed as my body she lifted
Know this child will be gifted
With love, with patience and with faith
She’ll make her way, she’ll make her way
– Natalie Merchant Wonder
Natalie Merchant’s Tigerlily was one of my first CDs and I’ve loved this song ever since. Who knew in middle school that it would be such a special song to me and my walk through motherhood.
This is our Matt. He’s eight years old now and about to finish the first grade at our church’s elementary school. Matty is and always has been full of spunk, heart, and passion. He has beautiful hazel eyes, super long eyelashes, and arguably the best hair in the family. He’s his big brother’s biggest fan and our household pray-er on the way to school every morning. I’m always amazed at how thoughtful and soulful he can be.
Matt was diagnosed with ADHD and dyslexia earlier this year. It’s been quite a journey thus far with Matty. He’s super smart. But, he struggles with staying on task in a big way. He can and does get lost on the way to the bathroom on a regular basis. He has trouble sleeping and suffers from a good bit of anxiety. He also feels things in a big way and has trouble managing his emotions when he is upset. Unfortunately, he’s been suspended a few times for hurting a friend when they didn’t act the way he wanted them to.
As the younger brother of a very calm “rule follower” and the son of the pastor at a school that isn’t perfectly set up for different behavior, it has been quite a journey for Matt thus far. We’ve slowly and carefully walked our way through repeating kindergarten, meeting with learning specialists, going to several developmental pediatricians, trying the all-natural route with prescription OMEGA-3s, trying various doses of ADHD meds, providing accommodations at school, meeting regularly with a children’s mental health counselor, and participating in a weekly play therapy group.
We’ve been thankful that we’ve had some great teachers for Matt who are willing to work with him and celebrate his accomplishments big and small. God has truly sent people our way to help us at every step. But, it’s an everyday struggle that we wish Matty didn’t have to manage and we didn’t have to champion.
Like most kids with ADHD, Matty runs completely hot and cold. He is all heart and gets bruised easily when things don’t go his way. But, when the stars align, he can truly shine and display the beautiful big heart that God made to love this world deeply.
My hope is to share stories about Matty that will bring community to those who are experiencing these sorts of struggles and a deeper sense of understanding to those who don’t yet understand what it means to have learning and behavioral challenges.
Just like the song, I know that Matt will, with love, with patience, and with faith, make his way.
He is my wonder.