Saturday, December 15, 2018

A Wonderful Young Man

Time seems to be going by so quickly.  I look at all our pictures from over the years and am in awe of how God has been so faithful in all things.  The miracles in our lives and how God brought each child into our home.  How far they have all come.  How old they are all getting!  I am amazed at it all.
As these middle children are hitting their upper teens it has been hard in some ways.  Hard to learn how to let them go a little more each year, to trust the Lord and all we have taught them.  I tend to like to hold tight to each of the children.  Protect them from  making mistakes and try to keep them close.  It is hard for me, to start handing over to them, the responsibility of making their own decisions and way in life.  I know many of them will always live with us because of their special needs but we still want them to become as independent as possible, have goals and dreams and strive to achieve them.
Zeke recently had a birthday and turned 17 years old.  He is the middle, middle.  :)  Over the last year, I have seen a huge shift in him, not only in appearance but in maturity and in the way he sees life.  He is making good choices.  He does not get upset as easily and if he does, gets over it much quicker.  He is much more relaxed in who he is and in interacting with his siblings.  Having autism makes social situations harder for him, to participate and navigate.  He is more confident lately.  I have seen him, volunteering to participate, in going on outings when invited. (especially if there is going to be food!) Or at least responding when talked to and not just standing far away from everyone else in crowds.  I have also seen him start to tease his siblings in a joking way to make them laugh, especially with Carolyn and Elizabeth. These are all huge for him.

I don't know why it is so hard for me to see them growing up, when I also see that God is doing such a work in them and they are maturing into such nice young people.  It is all God and again I am just so amazed.  Truly, they are my friends as well as siblings much of the time.  We get along well.

Zeke has grown into a quiet, kind young man.  He is helpful and always does his best at what he is asked to do.  He loves going to the work program he is enrolled in at school and every place he has worked, loves having him work there.  In his spare time he makes movies for Tim and I for our movie night.  Short 10 minute movies using his wooden railway or stop animation with legos.  He enjoys food and loves animals.  He has a little therapy/companion dog that is always in his arms when he is home.  It even sleeps with him and helps keep him calm.  He has had this little dog since it was six weeks old and it will be 14 years old in a few months.  Most of our pictures of him growing up have this little dog in his arms.

Zeke wanted to eat at home for his birthday meal.  He wanted his dad to grill out and for me to make home made mac-cheese.  He wanted my sister to make home made cheesecake with blueberries for his cake.  He loved it! My sister and her family also took him to the lego store.  He had a ball!
Zeke came to be our son because of a God given dream.  He has been through so much but has been such a good son and brother to his family.  He is a very kind and gentle soul and we have been very blessed to be chosen to raise him.  He is becoming a wonderful young man.  We love you!  Happy Birthday Zeke!

I pray God is with you now and always.  That He will have His mighty hand of protection upon you and lead you in the path He chooses for you.   That He will have a heart towards you as you have a heart towards Him.

Isaiah 41:10 So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God.

Love, Dad, mom, Stephen, Antonio, William, Carolyn, Elizabeth, Billy, Timothy, Kinsley and Anna-Kate