I was sitting at the computer this morning, reading a few news headlines while I waited for my son, Christopher, to get ready for school.
While I was sitting there, he came in to talk to me. Here is the entire conversation:
Christopher: "Dad, can I ask you a question?"
Christopher: "Will I ever find love."
Me: "Anything's possible."
My half-smart aleck, half serious answer seemed to be enough, as he then proceeded to get ready for school with nothing more said on the subject. Afterward, though, I got to thinking more about the subject.
First thought: This was an entirely appropriate question for Christopher to ask given that today is Valentine's Day, and as he put it, the day is about love, although he first indicated that by making kissing noises.
Second thought: Christopher's question has no easy answer, especially where he is concerned, given his autism. While he is capable of displaying emotion, I don't know whether he is capable of developing deep feeling for another person. It is a question I have occasionally asked even of myself.
There are times that I have great belief in Christopher's ability to lead and live a "normal" life, one that includes things like college, career, and even love, marriage, and family. At other times, I wonder to what extent he will be capable of such a life and to what degree he might be allowed to have such a life.
One thing I have learned as Christopher's dad is that nothing in life is certain and that there are no easy answers. Another thing I learned is that the answer I gave Christopher this morning, while intended somewhat flippantly at the time may, in fact, have been the best answer after all. Because when nothing is certain, anything truly is possible.