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It’s amazing!

By Darcy L. Fargo

Darcy Fargo

May 1, 2024

He’ll never stop surprising and amazing me.

My son, Jake, turns 17 in just over a week.

When Jake was diagnosed with autism just before his second birthday, I didn’t know what our lives would look like moving forward, and I didn’t know what the future held for my joyful and delightful “little big man,” as I referred to him, who happened to be non-verbal and have profound sensory issues around loud noises, strong smells, and food textures and flavors, but I certainly didn’t think it would look like this.

As of last year, Jake is no longer classified as a student in need of special education services. He attends typical classes with almost no required accommodations beyond extended test time, which he typically uses only for Regents tests or similar. He brought home his report card this week. The lowest grade on it was an 88 in English. He had a 100 in his business math class!

I feel like words can’t adequately describe how proud I am of him.

Beyond that, Jake has a close group of friends. They regularly talk and text about sports, day-to-day happenings and whatever else teen boys talk about. They occasionally video chat to show one another new sports cards or collectibles. A couple of them altar serve with Jake.

He was also asked this year to be the manager of the varsity baseball team at his school. He’s been warmly accepted and included as part of the team. He’s learned to keep stats in a sport that isn’t necessarily his favorite, and he gets to spend even more time with some of his closest friends and his favorite teacher, who coaches the team. He was beaming when he received his uniform, and his team hat and jacket.

I thank God every day for this amazing young man. I thank God every day for planting us in a community that has embraced him, quirks and all. I thank God for all the teachers, therapists, support professionals, providers… who helped him get to where he is.

Both God and Jake will never stop surprising and amazing me.

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