This was posted by one of my daughters who has an autistic child. Of all my “high flying” children I am most proud of her!
I know one of her greatest trails was the reaction of folks around thinking (or even saying) “Why doesn’t she shut that kid up!” not realizing he had a genuine problem (he looks like an angel – a normal angel!). She said sometimes she felt like hanging a sign around her neck saying “Give us a break he’s autistic”.
Now years later thanks to her love and sacrifice he has made tremendous progress he can talk, interact, love. Now the world is no longer the strange and upsetting place it once was to him. But how much pain could have been avoided had those around had more understanding.
God help us not to judge when we don’t have all the facts.
(The intro to the new fantasy book I’m working on which could best be described as an apocalyptic love story. – feed back especially welcome!)
Lisa lurched up in bed, eyes glaring open. Beyond gaping curtains blood dripped down a moon washed sky. Like crimson drops from an overloaded brush it seeped from the heavens. Visions trapped her eyes in lurid glimpses, even as the dull rhythm of chants filled her nights with foreboding. They had done from childhood.
“Save us, save us!” voices throbbed, like waves on a beleaguered shore, oddly unemotional, echoing. Damp sheets clasped to her face she gazed in horror, clutching her eyes, seeking to evade the images. Clenching them only blanketed her in darkness, she needed light. Grasping the ebony rosary about her neck, she mumbled ineffective prayers…
The vision faded… they always did in the end. Sobbing she reached for the lamp.
Some would envy her “gift”. They didn’t understand. She wanted to escape it. Like a highly sensitive receiver she picked up “channels” that others were blissfully unaware of.
It was growing worse. A feeling of foreboding nibbled at the corners of her mind, things were coming to an end. As a child it had been fascinating playing with her “powers”. Now it was no longer a game. She played for real and stakes were high!
Only the rosary seemed to help, perhaps it had belonged to some saintly nun… a friend’s gift bought in a charity shop, she had no idea of its origin. Lisa herself was no nun or ever likely to be. She’d had her share of lovers, seeking one whose arms could shield her from the “shadows”. What comfort she’d found was brief, none could keep away the prevailing darkness she felt enveloping the world; rather they tended to drain her, sucking energy from her beleaguered spirit. At best they were powerless to help her.
She kept things secret.. People were apt to restrain, medicate, to put folks like her in asylums where drugs and negative environments would leave her unable to exercise any control.
Shaken she took a book from under her pillow and began to read, words tumbling past her mind into the oblivion she sought.
Morning sun revealed the devastation of the night, dark brown curls lay tangled about her shoulders and shadowed, red glazed eyes peered back from the waxen face in the mirror. She had to work, she needed the money. She must paint on a mask and pretend everything was normal when she knew it was not…
The tiny pod lingered in the vastness of the universe. He was alone, barely enough fuel to make in to the surface. Sweat beaded his brow. Would he make it? Around him the pod bore the scars of its ejection through the meteor shower precipitating the end of the doomed star ship limping home, defeated, to a dying world. They’d gambled and lost. Now his species faced extinction, would he be the last he wondered, alone on planet 84?
Looking out of the window he marvelled at the glory of the galaxy around him, the neighbouring planets of solar 19. He could see it now, planet 84, his place of exile. He flipped on the analysis screen. That it had water, a breathable atmosphere, he knew, but it had yet to be fully investigated. He’d be the first human to set foot on its glowing orb, (if he made it that was…)
There was nothing he could do now but wait, wait as its radiant sphere loomed closer, glowing in the inky sky. It was not unlike his native Earth had once been, before rendered uninhabitable, pristine oceans, white cloud masses set against green brown lands. He’d seen pictures of earth, retained from the first space flights long, long ago, but seeing with his own eyes was different, a healthy, thriving planet alive with growth. What creatures would he find there? Might there be others like him, humanoid? He doubted it, in their frantic search for a new home they’d found none, only the devilish carnivores that called themselves Illumi and feasted on newly discovered human flesh, farming them like animals for their consumption. The fleet had been the last vestige of resistance, hidden in the depths of the dying earth. They had risked all in a futile attempt to save their people, but they had failed. Now, alerted to the possibility of rebellion, the Illumi would annihilate them. Tears streamed down his face, there was no one to see, no one at all.
They had entered its atmosphere. It looked like he was going to make it. Gazing down at the surface spinning past he was overwhelmed by its beauty. Turquoise oceans spotted with islands sparkled in the sun; mountain tops lifted their snow topped heads to the sky. Shifting to manual override he checked his fuel gage … It should be enough. This terrain looked familiar. He slowed a little. Three large triangles loomed through jungle canopies, definitely constructed by intelligent life, but would they be as the Illumi?
He’d seen them before, but where? No! It couldn’t be! But it was! His journey it seemed had not only been one of space but time. Below he saw the tribes people scatter as he touched down in what he knew one day would be Mexico.
“I’m not ready for this!” he yelled, as they rushed him through the field hospital. No one answered, just the syringe spraying its fountain of analgesic before plunging into his arm. They were taking off his leg for Christ’s sake! Strong hands held him down as he sank into darkness…
Light pervaded his eyes, as blinking, he re-emerged into consciousness. Panic surged. Grasping frantically joy erupted. It was there, solid flesh, without searing pain – the anesthetic? The strange thing was he was in his army fatigues and this was no hospital!
Before him stood monumental gates their scrolled iron work giving clear view. He watched as people thronged past. His side seemed strangely empty unbearably lonely, but within life thronged in happy abandon. He grasped at the iron work but a chain held it in place against him. He yelled to let him in, but they shook their heads smiling.
A familiar face wended through the throng.
“Dad!” Father smiled knowing his appearance heralded understanding. It hit Sam like a thunderbolt. Dad reached through the railing.
“It’s OK Sam, you’re not locked out forever, it’s just not your time yet.
“It’s the anaesthetic, an allergic reaction, but they’re fighting for you. If they fail the gate will open. You’ll have your leg here,” he nodded down at the sound limb, no longer a shattered mess of blood and bone.”
“But what about Jan and the kids?”
“You’ll have to wait till they come…” The gate quivered, but he no longer wanted entry, he wanted Jan, to hold the boys in his arms, be there as they grew up…
Darkness enshrouded him once more, all faded to nothingness.
Harsh hospital lights invaded his eyes. The leg was no longer there. It didn’t matter, he told himself, it would be waiting. For now Jan and the boys were more important.