When I was in 6th grade we had a 1st grade buddy class, you know, that you would go and do activities and crafts with every so often. When we went for the first time my class stood in a line and the 1st graders got to come up one by one and pick their buddy. There was a boy named Sam that I could tell was different and they said that he would have a teachers aid for a buddy, but while the other kids were picking buddies he got up as well and came over and grabbed my hand and led me back to his desk. They let me be his buddy.
That led to me learning what autism was and me being his and his brothers babysitter. And eventually that led to me becoming a hab and respite worker for people with special needs when I turned 18. I lost contact with Sam and his family after I went to high school but one day on instagram someone posted that Sam would be at the Gilbert farmers market selling his art work.
And he remembered me! I was touched and so happy to see him and Renata (his mother) again.
We even had them come over to swim and it was so fun to see him interacting with my kids.
I got cards of a lot of his paintings. He was always a great artist even as a small boy. I love his paintings and a print of the Gilbert water tower is hanging in my home.
I am so glad I ran into them again. They had such a big impact on my life and I learned so much from them. It was wonderful to see them again.