Thursday, January 28, 2016

A Friendship Forged By Elevator Rides

When our family moved to Michigan over 14 years ago, one of the very first things we did was join a church. We are blessed to be part of such a great faith community. About a year and a half ago, a gal that I knew, but not really, really well, (Mrs. F) approached us after Mass. She was telling our family how her older daughter had worked over the summer with special needs children. A few days later, she sent me this message:

"Cathy, I don't think I was very eloquent because I hadn't thought out exactly what I wanted to say. But I was thinking about you all summer. I guess what i wanted to tell you was how much I admire you and your husband. Dom is your son and I know you would do anything for him, just as you do for Lauren and your stepson. But still, you are so incredibly patient and loving...and just amazing. You are lucky to have Dom in your life...but Dom is also a very blessed little boy. That is really what I wanted to say."

Wow, I thought she was very eloquent! Such kind and supportive words. For about the past two years, we have used an elevator ride as a "reward" for Dominic behaving well in church. There have been a handful of times where he didn't get a ride because he acted up and he was NOT happy. Looking forward to an elevator ride after church has been a HUGE incentive for him. My husband, Lauren or I used to accompany Dominic, until one day I asked Mrs. F if she would like to ride with him. Now, she is his number one choice for those elevator rides.  She told me recently,

"I'm honored to be someone that Dominic is comfortable with and wants to share his special treat with. He is an awesome young man. I enjoy those elevator rides, too!!"

The definition of a friendship according to the Merriam-Webster dictionary is, "a friendly feeling or attitude - kindness or help given to someone." It has been really cool to watch Mrs. F and Dominic become "buddies." I appreciate the time she has taken to not just to get to know Dominic, but our entire family. We both have kids in college and what a great support she has been to me. Thank you Mrs. F from the bottom of my heart.


  1. Interesting perspective--and I'd like to add a story from our church. A young man, about age 15, who is on the autism spectrum attends church weekly. He arrives early and operates the handicapped elevator very efficiently--I think he enjoys elevators as your son does. He greets people appropriately, holds the doors, and helps elderly people navigate the elevator. It's a wonderful win-win, since he is acknowledged as a helpful member of the community--as he truly is.

  2. What a great story - thanks so much for sharing it!!


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