Those three little words were Jack's first as a public speaker. (You can see for yourself right here.) And although for most of us, they come so easily, that hasn't been the case for my sweet kid.
He's spent three years working on those three little words.
As most of you already know, three years ago, our Jack was considered a "non-verbal learner." Fortunately, over the last three years, he has spent every school day in the tender loving care of Nashoba Learning Group.
Nashoba is a place like not other, with devoted professionals who know how to help children with autism reach their full potential. They are committed to sweet Jack and that beautiful mind of his. As he tumbles out of the car every day and grabs the hand of his teacher, I know in my heart the sky is the limit. He's in the right hands.
Not only do they work with children like Jack, they also work with adolescents and young adults with autism. The work is hard. The pay is minimal. But the staff at Nashoba continues to break new ground, believing in kids that pretty much everyone else has given up on.
To express my gratitude, I'm lacing up my running shoes and hitting the course of the historic Boston Marathon on April 18th. To be honest, I'm a little nervous about the run. I'm not getting any younger and have just a few short weeks to train.
But on race day I'll grab a Sharpie and scribble the names of those beautiful Nashoba students all over my arms and legs. When fatigue inevitably hits, I'll glance at a name ... and put one foot in front of the other heading up Heartbreak Hill. (It's nothing compared to the hard work they put in every day...)
You won't see Jack's name scribbled on my arms or legs. I'm saving a special spot for him right over my heart....
I hope you'll consider supporting my run for Nashoba. You can do so right here. Any donation, big or small, would be incredibly appreciated.