In the last few years, we’ve read too many heartbreaking tales of kids’ Birthday parties gone wrong. There’s the Birthday Party no one shows up to or the child that doesn’t get invited to a party because they are different. Both scenarios are heartbreaking not only for the child, but also the parents who yearn for their child to be loved and accepted by the world as they are within their family unit.
But one mum was taken by surprise when her special needs child was invited to a party.
Seven-year-old Timothy was diagnosed with non-verbal autism when he was two. One of the challenges of being autistic is overstimulation and if a lot of noises are going on at once, it can be too much for the child to handle. Parents have to be wise on what situations they place their child in to avoid a reaction.
Birthday parties have always been a no-no for Timothy simply because of the overstimulation and big crowds. It can be hard for him to tune things out.
But Timothy’s mum was moved to tears when she received a hand-written invitation for Timothy to attend a party. She posted it online for others to see the kindness of others in accepting and facilitating her son at a party.
“Yes, I was shocked that someone would take not only the time to write the note but to be considerate enough to include him with all of his difficulties. It was a wonderful moment … We parents of the ‘specials’ know only too well the hurts our kids feel when they are left out of the social gatherings relative to childhood. Organized sports, play dates, sleepovers, and yes – the dreaded birthday parties,” she says. “I want only one thing for our kids – for all kids really, and that is inclusion. All they want is to feel included and accepted for who and what they are – that different is okay … it’s just different.”
The mother who sent the note was Ainsley Peikos. Her son Carter had become good friends with Timothy. Ainsley was adamant about ensuring Timothy could be included into the celebrations.
“Carter had always talked about him, so I didn’t think twice when he wanted him at the party,” Peikos says. “The only question was, ‘How could we make it work so that Timothy could come and have a great time just like anyone else?’ He came early. He went right into the bounce castle with Carter and they had a great time.”
What made this interaction beautiful was another mother’s willingness to ‘make it work’. As a result, the bond between the mothers has developed into a strong friendship.
“These few words allowed Tricia and I to develop an amazing friendship. I love knowing that one note gave her the ability to go on another day as she continues life with Timothy.”