I finally watched the movie “Wonder” and I may or have may not have cried. Don’t get me wrong, the tears were manly tears. Each tear probably had its own little beard but they were tears none the less.
What was it that hit me? Was it the hard times Auggie faced? The initial lack of social acceptance? Was it the fear and trepidation that his parents dealt with when they sent him to school or the conflict they had when they were not on the same page about sending him to school? Or was it how Olivia’s (Auggie’s sister) life was impacted?
It wasn’t any of these things. Although, all these things were right on the money and in one way or another I could relate to each of them. While our struggles were different, I could relate to each of the challenges depicted and have seen them exemplified in our own family. No, the thing that got me was the acceptance.
After all the difficulties, Auggie’s classmates accepted him. They laughed at his jokes. They high fived him and gave him a standing ovation when he was given an award for being an exemplary person at the end of the school year. This is what made the tears stream down my face.
I’ve learned to take the good days with the hard. But it breaks my heart when I sit down with my little buddy, talk with him about his goals and his top goal is to make friends. He wants to make more friends but social situations can be really hard for him.
He wants to be accepted and you know what, I want that for him. I want the kids high fiving him. I want them laughing at his jokes. I want them to be seeking him out and to miss him if he is not there. Do I care if he is popular or if he ever has a standing ovation from a group of peers? No, but I want him to be accepted.
Here’s the thing though, even in the midst of the uncertainty about his future and how he will be accepted. I have a confident hope and assurance. Even when I’m no longer around, my son has a heavenly Father in whose image he was made. A father who will never leave him, forsake him or turn him away. A father who recognizes how wonderfully our children were made.
“Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these.”
~ Jesus (Mark 10:14 NIV)
Have you seen the movie, “Wonder?” How did it resonate with you?
Jonathan McGuire is the co-founder of Hope Anew, a nonprofit that comes alongside the parents of children with additional needs on spiritual and emotional level. You can follow Hope Anew on Facebook here: https://www.facebook.com/hopeinthetrenches/.