We all need grounding in our life and in order to achieve this we need to be focused, we need to feel comfortable with ourselves and most of all we need to know how to love. When we find that special person in our life and are able to express ourselves and open up we can then share our love and then make plans for a family. Family is what makes us whole and teaches us responsibility and makes us better and more well rounded. I have learned so much from my wife and son and my life is so much more meaningful and happier since they both have come into my life. I remember how important family was when I was a little boy growing up with loving parents and 2 sisters who I care very much for. We were a happy family but we did have dysfunction and sadness as our parents had so much love for each other and for us but they had some problems that affected their state of mind and at times they both required medical care and sometimes hospitalization. They were great parents and it is very sad that they had to encounter these personal battles with their emotions and with depression.
Life does have its share of happy moments but it also has many challenges and sometimes they can affect us in ways where we are not always able to best deal with them and we can be affected where we encounter emotional turmoil and that is when we need strength of family. Our family is deeply connected to us and we all feel the hurt and pain of someone so very close to us. We live their joys and celebrations as well as their disappointments and heartbreaks. We depend on each other in our family and we know how important it is to listen to each other and provide a level of comfort and a friendly environment where no one should feel alone. Sometimes we do go through personal worries that we wish not to talk about and we have to deal with it in our own ways. I suspect my dad did that on occasion given the danger in his work as an ironworker as he witnessed the deaths of co-workers first hand. These experiences left him numb and he could only deal with his pain on his own terms.
In talking with my son I try to give him sound advice and prepare him for the future which can be intimidating. He is still a kid and I want him to enjoy his childhood and learn to develop skills he feels comfortable with. I don't want him to feel pressure or get upset but I know that is impossible. I wish to guide him as best I can with my wife's help and allow him to grow naturally and feel comfortable with his self expression. Autistic children generally have difficulty with self expression and that is why it is so important that we allow our son to feel comfortable in expressing his feelings and to cry if he is hurting. There is nothing wrong with crying if you feel sad. It is better than keeping it to yourself. My dad wasn't big on expressing his feelings. He kept things inside and that was not healthy because when he really needed to talk to someone in his time of despair he kept it bottled up and unfortunately he could not deal with his pain anymore and sadly he took his life in an instant. This is so very painful to all who knew and loved him and to us his immediate family it is very very sad knowing what he went through in his life and knowing how kind and caring a person he was. He would give the shirt off his back to help someone in need. He was always there for our son and we all miss him as he was the glue in our family and he kept everyone close and together.
Our son is also loved by his grandmother, Maria's mom who always is there for him and she takes great care of him during the day. We are very lucky to have her with us and Matty has a nice bond with her. She was also very kind to my dad when he would come by and visit. We are a family of 3; Maria, Matty and me. We also have Grandma who lives with us and she is part of our family as well. We are blessed with living near my 2 sisters and their families and Maria's sister Fe and her family. Having relatives nearby is good as we always enjoy family celebrations and gatherings. I remember when I was a young kid the family gatherings we used to attend and we always had fun times. It seems the time between childhood and adulthood is fleeting and before you know it you are reliving your past wondering where the time went. I just went through that upon my recent 30 year high school reunion.
All I can say as I get older and see my son growing is my wish to always be there for him and my wife and to be the best husband and dad I can be. I learned well from my parents and I have a lot of love in my heart for my wife, Maria and my son, Matthew. I am so happy as I am part of a family and I feel so blessed.
Edward D. Iannielli III