A significant part of my childhood was spent living in a yellow split-entry house on Beveland Street.
It was outside on the patio of 7455 SW Beveland that my brother and sister and I would race our tricycles as fast as our pudgy little legs would pedal. It was in that same back yard that I conquered bike riding. This feat allowed me to race down the front drive way and up and back down Beveland Street with my siblings at break-neck speed…or so we thought.
It was from 7455 SW Beveland that I would make a quick five minute walk to Phil Lewis Elementary School for my entire elementary school career. I loved that! I appreciated the freedom of being able to leave for school when I wanted and return from school when I wanted without being dependent upon a school bus.
It was inside the basement of 7455 SW Beveland that my brothers and sister and I played games, commandeered the entire family room with LEGO and Fisher Price Little People and enacted story after story after story.
Our family adopted our first and only dog which we named Patches the Penny Pincher — and that little ruffian forced our family into search and rescue missions when he escaped through the front door far too often. We always found that little rascal and always brought him safely back to 7455 SW Beveland.
Years and years of birthday parties, sleep-overs, Christmas mornings, first-day-of-school preparations, and more filled up our lives at 7455 SW Beveland Street.
And then, one day, my family’s time at 7455 SW Beveland was over. The years of childhood memory making there came to and end when we moved.
I never had the opportunity to return to this familiar house. Over the years, the neighborhood changed. In fact, home after home after home was torn down on Beveland Street. Progress stands still for no one and our beloved little elementary school also was torn down and soon a Lowe’s store was built in its place.
Unlike so many houses on Beveland Street, our old house would not be destroyed. Instead, it would be transformed and made new. Amazingly, it would become a place of help and healing.
And incredibly in time, this same house would become a place of assistance for my children – today – in 2015; thirty-six years since the day that my family moved away!!!
One of the things that John and I wanted to do on home assignment was have Jake and Caleb evaluated and determine where they are on the autism spectrum. So much has changed and so much more is available for autistic children and adults since we left for South Africa ten years ago. John and I want to do as much as we can to accentuate the strengths and develop the areas where Jake and Caleb continue to struggle.
As I researched different places where Jake and Caleb could be evaluated, to my surprise I discovered that autism evaluation services were available at Western Psychological and Counseling Services at 7455 SW Beveland!
After a few inquiries and the affirmation that our insurance would work there, we scheduled Jake and Caleb for individualized assessments.
Recently, as I sat in the waiting room of 7455 SW Beveland – which was once the garage by the way – I couldn’t shake the joy in my soul or remove the happy smile from my face. Surrounding me, sitting in other chairs, were families and individuals each waiting their turn for one reason or another at 7455 SW Beveland. They were there, like me, to receive support and assistance to benefit the lives of their children and their families.
Few of us ever are given or perhaps take the opportunity to return to the home of our childhood. For me, I not only was given the opportunity but was provided a tour of this home – that now serves as a place of hope, help, recovery and redemption. Jake has finished his testing. In time we will receive the results. Caleb’s turn approaches soon. In the meantime, I am just grateful that even now, my old, old, old home is still a place where good, good things are happening.
How cool is that?
How amazing is that?
How awesome is that?
And – on a completely different side note – for those of you who know my lion testimony…guess what? A stone lion was there too! How incredibly amazing of my God to demonstrate His Presence and His care in my life and in my children’s lives once again… with a lion perfectly positioned to welcome us. Wow!