I have fourteen nephews. Several of them I’ve lost touch with since I divorced my first husband. One of them has recently come back into my life and I’m very happy about that. There is no particular reason for this reacquaintance other than the fact that he picked up the phone a couple of months ago and called me. His name is Travis. He is seventeen years old and he is Autistic. And he is amazing.
As I said, I’d lost touch with him. I remember him as a small boy, full of energy and totally hell- bent on growing up to be a garbage man. He could ask more questions in the span of a conversation than a world-class interrogator and with impressive intensity. He would often repeat himself and you would wonder if he was really paying attention. Well, I realize now that, oh yes, he was paying attention and at twenty years old, may very well be one of the wisest people I know. And the very coolest part is that it seems that he’s filtered every piece of information through his very large heart and is left with a head full of all that is right and good with the world. An inspiration to behold? You better believe it. Do I worry that the influence of society will tarnish or corrupt his beautiful mind? I do, but without understanding completely the way his mind works, it’s hard to say. His honesty is beguiling. He can, though, be very judgemental. But his judgements are mostly valid. Yes, so-and-so really is lazy. And yes, what’s-her-name does curse too much. But he would never smoke dope or drink beer because “it can cause problems for you later on.” I wish I had time to detail more of our conversations. They would read like a Chicken Soup book with some wicked humor thrown in.
Travis usually calls about once a week. As I’ve been overly busy lately and not entirely focussed, his call usually catches me when I’m least expecting it. I’ve come to think of our talks as sort of a “wake up call.” I might be all wrapped up in whatever when the phone rings but by the time he says, “I love you Aunt Linda” at the end of the call, I’ve had my priorities straighted out and have a new perspective on my day. You know those times in your life when something fantastic or tragic or miraculous happens and you are absolutely sure that it’s God looking down and saying “Hey Stupid!” or whatever His pet name for you might be… and it causes you to re-think whatever it is you’re doing… It feels to me that He has put Travis back in my path to reinforce a few lessons on humility, compassion and the importance of Family, among other things.
So, yesterday I received my first Christmas card of the Season which totally put me into the Christmas Spirit.
It was sent with Lourv from my Nieghfu, Travis.