The other week, my Mom called me and asked me how I was. I said good. My real life is going great. Oscar and Cal are doing great. But my not-real life, my TV life, isn’t going too well. They kicked off the autistic kid on the Glee Project. (The Glee Project is that reality show where they have a talent competition to see who gets to be on Glee next season.) The judges kept saying the autistic kid made odd acting choices and he kept getting in trouble for not following directions well. They loved him but Ryan Murphy said he thought going to the beat of your own drummer was important but the autistic kid couldn’t fit into Glee.
I was really annoyed cause there is this Turkish Muslim girl on the show and Ryan Murphy’s like, girls are really going to be inspired by you. Muslim girls are not being represented.
I’m like, what about me? I was really inspired by the autistic kid being on Glee. It was nice to see people appreciate the autistic kid and think he had talent and want to give him a job. Ryan Murphy, what about all the Mom’s of autistic kids who want to believe someday their kid will be able to get a job?
But I knew from the beginning, the autistic contestant would not make it on the show. I wouldn’t hire him. Not because he’s not cute or not talented but because he is way too much work. He has special needs–by definition. He has more needs and it’s a pain in the ass when you have to get things done.
Even though it’s just a TV show, I’ve been in a little bit of a funk since the autistic kid got kicked off of The Glee Project. I guess the fact that Ryan Murphy loved the autistic kid and he was doing well on the show, I took it as a sign that Cal is going to be OK. People will love him and appreciate him and want to give him a job and realize how special he is. “Look, it’s cool to be autistic, you can be on Glee.” I know Ryan Murphy doesn’t decide what happens to Cal. Cal decides what he’s going to do and the Universe and God. I want some help. I just want someone big and powerful to say, don’t worry, you’re son’s going to be OK. You don’t have to do anything anymore. I want the load off of me.
When my typical son, Oscar was 5, we went to see The Whiz in downtown Atlanta. I felt kinda bad cause it was just a spontaneous thing I decided to take Oscar to on Christmas Eve and so I was wearing jeans and Oscar wasn’t dressed up. So everyone else in the audience was African American and serious and dressed up. I didn’t think much about what we wore before. The play was really cool and Oscar was very into it. It was so cute because at intermission we went out to use the bathroom and the bells rang that it was time to go inside. Oscar and I went in but most everyone else stayed out in the food area eating and chatting. Oscar couldn’t believe it. He said, don’t they want to know what’s going to happen? Oscar was so into the story and waiting for intermission to end to see what happened to the characters he couldn’t believe people were taking their time coming back in the theater. As we were waiting for the show to begin the 2nd Act, I read the program. The director wrote, “If you carry something that might be a load, give it to God, and then ease on down the road.”
I want to believe Cal will be OK, and is OK. So I asked God what I should do and God said, “Just believe it, what can it hurt? Ryan Murphy didn’t control what you believed about Cal. You just decided Cal is going to be OK and used the Glee Project as evidence of that. You did all that yourself. Ryan Murphy and the show was just what you picked as evidence. Decide Cal is OK and will be OK and pick other evidence. You decided it before and can do it again and I’ll help you. You won’t have to do anything.”
So this is why autism is cool. I know I can decide how I want to view the world — good or bad. Its up to me and I’m going to use God to help me whenever I want. Before Cal, I didn’t realize how much control I have over how I feel and what I believe. Also, I didn’t use God that much. Now, I use God a lot. Thank you Cal for that.