Kevin would not come out of the bathroom. I sat down on the floor beside the door and wept. I guess the Lord heard me for He filled me with a new idea. The idea was to create something better, a place where Kevin could grow and have a better life. I had been fighting the bureaucratic healthcare system, the “walking-dead” shift workers who didn't care, a family that was disintegrating under the barrage of Kevin's destructive behaviors, and my own weariness and frustration. The better idea was Emmaus Home.
But I was beginning a new life alone, without money, without experience, and without connections. All I had to lean on was Jesus and Mary, and a vision that was fueled by the writings of Jean Vanier, of creating a safe and loving home for Kevin and other Adults with Autism. It has been three years and that vision has become a growing reality, filled with blessings and miracles. I always worried that my Kevin and our other adults might not have as rich and full a life as they deserved. But here is a brief list of just some of their activities in the past couple months.
The wonderful people down at the John Heinz Wilderness Center have graciously allowed our people to come and do everything from cleaning the windows to tidying up the nature path. All our guys just love this, and it’s a great opportunity to volunteer. Thank you, John Heinz people.
The Tinicum Swim Club has also been one of our favorite haunts all summer long. Albert gets a kick out of it and of course, John enjoys the snack bar.
We have been making regular trips to the New Castle Farmers Market. It is absolutely wonderful and all our guys simply love going up and down the aisles. It is jam packed with everything they love.
Our new art teacher, Stephanie, is teaching everyone how to create three dimensional fabric art. This is especially great for Marty who loves textures, colors and fabrics of every sort.
Our music therapist, Margot, has become a big hit at Emmaus Home. Everyone joins in with tambourines, instruments and song. Every week they are calmed by the magic of music. Perhaps one day we will put on a concert!
And of course, the week is peppered with trips to Wawa, the grocery store for shopping, trips to Ridley State Creek Park, Bowling at MacDade Bowl, concerts at Rose Tree Park, Media and outings to the Library.
I would say our guys are experiencing a rich life. And while Kevin still swipes some light bulbs and breaks dishes, he has learned to enjoy living with others and being a part of that safe and loving family called Emmaus Home. Thank you Lord, and thank you Blessed Mother, Mary.