We’ve heard it a million times: your eyes are the window to your soul. It’s true, we connect with our eyes. Whether it be pools of deep blue that we could swim in all day, or deep green like the rolling hills in Ireland. When you lock eyes with someone, be it friend, lover, child–it’s a moment. A special moment where you connect and feel a bond. And for that small moment it’s just the two of you. Locked in a conversation, or even an unspoken emotion. We can have these moments with strangers, too, and walk away and move on with our lives having felt a little bit more human. Having received a tiny semblance of the soul of another, left behind inside our own eyes and heart. Depending on the person, you can instantly feel their emotion. Joy, excitement, hurt, grief.
Looking into the eyes of a child is such a beautiful gift, and one that I don’t think enough people pause to accept. Even tiny babies emote with their eyes, giving off love in tiny glances and stares. Sometimes locking eyes with my baby gives me butterflies–the intense blueness and peaceful energy are positively swoon-worthy. Indeed, he will break hearts one day.
But what if you could not share those little moments with your child? What if they could not look into your eyes, or if they could they could not really lock on or be in that moment with you?
For years my two oldest boys could not give decent eye contact. I had to live without that soul connection with them, and I barely even knew what their eyes looked like. Not just the color, but what they really looked like. Things have been getting better since then, and I’ve been slowly re-claiming their eyes from the grips of autism.
Even now, eye contact with my 5 yr old is rare enough that it feels like the first time every time. His peacefulness is locked inside his eyes, and rarely comes out. When I get that rare moment of eye contact, I get a moment of that peace. It calms me. It makes me feel like everything will be ok.