Yesterday was such an amazingly beautiful day, even for southern California standards. In Malibu, about 75 degrees and not a cloud in site. So we went out to the beach and enjoyed the sand in between our toes and the wind in our hair. We even ran into a friend. Charlie has been out surfing several times over the years, as I've posted in the past. Charlie's surfing buddy, Steve, was there, having spent the whole morning surfing, and then going back out with his camera to capture some of his stunning surf-photography. His work is really gorgeous, I am totally in awe of his photography, I can't wait to see what he captured yesterday! But really, he's just such a super cool guy for being a nice friend to Charlie. Charlie has instinct for good people, and he immediately spotted his friend!
A little bit about autism: I think it might have been Steve who once described taking kids with autism out surfing. He said (if it was him, in any case the writer said) something like, imagine all the sounds of the world being so overwhelming and loud, imagine the many people feeling like they're all coming at you, your world is chaotic and noisy and frightening at times. Then you go out into the ocean, the noises get further and further away, the mass of people left on the beach, with a barrier of water between you. The rocking motion of the waves lull you into a tranquil calm. The overwhelming sounds of life and the confusion of voices is replaced with ocean mist and water ripples. I totally see the ocean calling Charlie. He knows our exit off the freeway, and with his one word command, he insists "Beach!" from the backseat. You can see the pure joy on his face in these pics. And it makes Mom even happier to see! Over the years, I've had a few heart attacks as he makes a b-line straight for the water and will go right in! I've heard from other autism parents, "Oh, I couldn't let him go." And believe me, even last summer, I'd yell his name all day long, running after him and dragging him out of the waves. Then at the end of the summer, he began to listen and stop when I yelled. Yesterday, he actually turned around and came back to me! Huge! So, never give up on the progress, and never give up trying. It's worth it, for their joy and for the big accomplishments in the end!
Please excuse some of the photos, my mom grabbed my camera and shot them as we were walking around. Thanks Mom! I appreciate them, but there's a few focusing issues! Haha!