Friday, May 9, 2008

In Whose Presence?

It is a well known fact that many variables impact our kids' behavior.  I notice that Reid is very sensitive to people's expectations of him.  With someone who knows his personal best, he does nothing less.  With others, who are just meeting him and may make false assumptions that he is non-verbal or "unable" in some area, he stoops to that lowest denominator and those skills appear dormant. Whether he is believing their lie about him or just taking the easy road when possible, it is confounding to keep him motivated let alone raise the bar to his full potential. 

After a recent appointment with our chiropractor I found myself telling a friend that, "I like who Reid is in his presence."  Well, that sounded vaguely Biblical and dangerously heretical. Good fodder for blogging!  

Dr. Phillips is a fabulous man and skilled practitioner who we've seen once a month for more than two years.  At our last appointment, Reid was in rare form.  He has the doctor's spiel down pat--from the initial greeting at the door (in perfect intonation) to every inquiry in exact sequence as the appointment proceeds.  Thanks to Dr. Phillips' consistency and our repetition of going, Reid has worked out a stageworthy impersonation of this man.

This may be a case where "you had to be there" but let me try to convey our humor, surprise, and delight.  Part of understanding this also requires that you are a bit familiar with muscle checking, applied kinesiology and chiropractic--which could be good thing for what ails ya'.  

Dr. P:  Good Morning Reid!  How are you today?
R:  Good Morning Dr. Phillips! You are the best man in the whole...
Dr. P:  Aw thanks Reid.

Who can help but smile at that kind of affirmation and generous praise? (My husband took a bit of offense that night at the dinner table.  We reminded him that he has the honorable distinction of being the "best dad in the world" and Reid did catch himself before finishing the sentence.)

As Dr. Phillips proceeded the checklist of NET points had a familiar ring to me. To Reid, it was more than just familiar; he knows it verbatim. At his peak attentiveness that day, he anticipated each one. He beat Dr. Phillips to the punch more than once: "conception to birth," "personalized will" (which he mistook for "paralyzed will" which Dr. P had skipped)!  Reid seemed to be vying for his job.

 I love who Reid was in the presence of that man for those 20 minutes. He can enter that office having been vegged out on videos and act like a pill the minute he's back in the car, but for those 20 minutes his power was "on!" I really want everyone who interacts with him to hold that as a new baseline so he can generalize that gregarious, engaged, conversationalist, confident self into other settings! 

As much as the fabulous treatments, I value Dr. Phillips for the role model he is to Reid of a caring, tender, man diligently working in a helping profession, serving his clients with patience, warmth, and intuition.

When Moses descended the mountain after time with God, he had a glow, a radiance, a definite light which all the Israelites noticed.  He reflected the immense glory of our Father in Heaven who would blind us if we but gazed upon Him. Reminds me of the song You Are the Sun by Sara Groves?

You are the sun shining down on everyone
Light of the world giving light to everything I see
Beauty so brilliant I can hardly take it in
And everywhere you are is warmth and light

And I am the moon with no light of my own
Still you have made me to shine
And as I glow in this cold dark night
I know I can’t be a light unless I turn my face to you

Whose presence brings out the best in you? Have you been in the presence of the Lord lately? Is it apparent to those around you? In His presence, God renews us, changes our name, makes us white as snow, loves us, fills us up with His Spirit, delights in us. He sees us in our completion and fulfillment in Christ. THAT changes our potential!

...whenever Moses entered the LORD's presence to speak with him...they saw that his face was radiant.  Exodus 34:34-35

The LORD replied, "My Presence will go with you, and I will give you rest." Then Moses said to him, "If your Presence does not go with us, do not send us up from here. What else will distinguish me and your people from all the other people on the face of the earth?" 
Exodus 33:14-15

photo credits:,

1 comment:

  1. Angela Neve sent me your blog about Strengthsfinder, perhaps not realizing what a blessing she threw in my direction! It is so refreshing to witness a perspective full of faith, hope, and TRUST such as yours.

    I think we may have met briefly at the last Autism Speaks event. My daughter Avery was on stage singing with Reid & had the BEST time! Gage was a little shy & didn't want to get on stage. I remember meeting your daughter, too.

    Perhaps our paths will cross again...

    I'll definitely be following your inspirational blog!