A Matter of the Heart

Sunday night, pending a new school year, we talked about what the boys want to be when they grow up. My fourteen-year-old, shrugged his shoulders. But, I know if he had his heart’s desire he would have a career in the music industry. My husband and I emphasized that he should seek a career doing something he loves and then it won’t seem like work. My nine-year-old proudly announced he wants to be a police officer. No doubt he would be a good one with his karate skills and adventurous spirit. Wanting him to think past the badge and the gun, we discussed “criminology” and aiming for a fifth-degree black belt.

I asked my twelve-year-old what he wants to be.

“A doctor,” he said.

“What kind?” asked his dad.

“A heart doctor.”

My own heart ached with that statement.

My twelve-year-old struggles with a learning disability. Officially, he has Autism Spectrum Disorder. Although if the spectrum were a teeter-totter, he might easily fall off the end. Still, his dream of being a heart surgeon seems impossible.

But, is it?

Monday morning, as I was reading Steve Sjogren’s Conspiracy of Kindness, I came across this statement: “We can choose to do battle in two different arenas. We can either try to convince others in the arena of the mind or we can approach people in the arena of the heart.” He highlights the importance of service careers, and our societies misconception of the important roles service providers play. Sjogren goes on to point out how showing love through acts of service touches hearts.

This statement echoed my own realization Sunday night.

Even as we encouraged one son to pursue his passion and another to think beyond his current perception, we do the same for our ASD son. He may not repair hearts with a scalpal and sutures. But, I have no doubt, my son, with his passion for people and his own God-directed way, will one day touch hearts.

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