I intentionally didn’t post anything over the Christmas break because our family was a bit overwhelmed with what James said via the letter board and it took a while to process. We had a lot to think about and it was news to us that James often felt “lonely and without a role” during the holiday family gatherings and celebrations. I think we are all adjusting to the fact that this person who is our son and brother could not tell us what he was really thinking until now. There is a lot in James and can you imagine how many feelings you would have stored up if you were unable to speak for 12 years?
He wrote each person in our family, as well as his three main teachers, a Christmas letter. Each letter was very special because he tells us how important we all are to him for various reasons. There wasn’t a dry eye at our table on the morning we read them. But there were some hard things in the letters. It is easy to make up what you think someone is feeling if you never hear their thoughts expressed. And it is easy to assume that they know things you think are implicit to your relationship but may not be to them. So we are learning and growing with James and also remembering that he is a teenager so maybe some of the angst is plain old adolescence!