Dear 2nd grade,

Dear 2nd grade,

We are only 4 days into the school year. However, you have been on my mind for many years. I looked up to you as Sawyer began preschool, traveled the halls of kindergarten, and progressed in 1st grade.

Ironically, it was you that scared me all along. I knew there would be a day that Sawyer would be with you. His spirit, his excitement, and his curiosity would enter your world.

So here we are. My fear is real. 2nd grade seems like where old kids reside. Knocking on being 8 years old scares me. Because the more I see Sawyer’s peers, the more I see the difference. He is not like them. And how long will his peers tolerate him being different?

Sawyer enjoys the monkey bars, pretending to hunt for treasures, and repeating tv show openings so he can hear the same theme song. This is where he is developmentally. Though he is 7.5 years old, he behaves more like that of a 5 year old in many ways.

It is charming, cute, and loving. It’s also should be noted that he is making phenomenal progress. His conversations, his reading, his math, and his writing have blossomed. This is exciting.

It’s also a cruel reminder of what is real. Sawyer’s peers are moving on. They are developing as they should.

What was once a collection of acceptance could expire soon. As friendships form, homework begins, and expectations accelerate, I worry.

And I worry. That is my problem. Not Sawyer’s, not his teachers, and not his peers.

So though I welcome 2nd grade into our lives, I do so cautiously. I just want Sawyer to continue his path while I learn to continue to embrace his differences.

Have a great year,

Autismdadinthe603