Aug 11 2009
C.S. Lewis once posed the question, and I am paraphrasing, mainly because I am too lazy to look up the actual quote, but he once asked, how different Christianity might have been if the Gospel writers had said, “….and Jesus laughed.” I only mention it because my wife and I have come to the conclusion that – by the way our Savior answers our prayers – he must have a great sense of humor.
One example of this could be that years ago when we decided to have children, we prayed for patience, tolerance, love and understanding. Which by the way, we felt were virtues that only would come to us with some kind of divine revelation. It would have been nice if God would have just sprinkled some kind of fairy dust through our heating vents and we would have woken up more patient, kind, loving and understanding. The truth is, in His loving way, He gave us not one, but two, ADHD children. Those of you reading this that have hyper children know that there is no better way to learn those virtues than through ADHD boys and girls.
Of course, I myself was hyperactive, but in my day, “the dinosaur days” as my offspring refer to it, they didn’t have a name for hyperactivity. If I was anything I was O.L.T, Obnoxious Little Twit.
There were teachers that would drag me out in the hall and slam me against the lockers. I actually had one teacher head butt me, that’s right, head butt me. I wonder if she prayed for patience, tolerance, love and understanding?
So imagine my surprise when the school called years later and said to me, “I believe your son is hyperactive.”
“What’s that?” I asked, somewhat perplexed.
They went on to explain it, and I yelled back to my wife, “Honey, there’s a name for it!”
Honestly, is this announcement news to any parent? Did any of your jaws drop when the school called and told you? The first day my wife and I dropped our son off at kindergarten, it was all we could do to keep from laughing. Some perky woman looked at us all and gushed, “We will have so much fun!”
To which my wife and I mumbled, “We are sure you will.” Then we proceeded right to Wal-Mart and purchased our first answering machine. Call it prophecy, but I felt I would be screening calls between 8:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. for the next 13 years.
The principal called me at home less than a week later to inform me that my boy would not sit in his chair and he was disrupting the entire class. He then went on to ask me what I thought he might do.
“Open the back door and let him loose. That’s what we do at home.” I replied. “He’ll come back when he’s tired – he always does.” I also suggested that they check his hair for tics when he returns because he likes to crawl through the shrubbery. I don’t think he took my advice. When I hung up, I prayed for his patience, tolerance, love and understanding.
I believe wholeheartedly in the power of prayer, and in God’s desire to answer those prayers. Life’s lessons come through adversity. C.S. Lewis also said that suffering was God’s megaphone. Those of us who raise ADD and ADHD children have heard that megaphone, but in hindsight that adversity gave us our greatest lessons as parents, and certainly an answer to a prayer. Not the way I would have answered it, but it is not my universe.
I cannot deny that, because of our children and their proclivity towards chaos, my wife and I are more patient, tolerant, loving and understanding.
I also can’t help but think there are times after “one of those days,” when Tami and I collapse exhaustively into the couch and look at each other and smile. Then we look at the heavens, and say, “alright, alright, we hear you.”
…..and Jesus Laughed.
Epilogue: I know that a lot of you have ADD and ADHD kids and I know it’s not always a laughing manner. Please feel free to share anything you wish.