Bumps In The Road

My cousin, Kathy, a Nurse Practitioner who works in Orthopedics, has a blog I follow at www.bloomingburghboomer.com . This week she shared that she was having some challenges keeping up with her running exercise program due to hip pain she is experiencing, and talked about how that affected her whole daily routine… At the end of her post, she asked her readers “how do you handle bumps in the road“? That question brought to mind an article I was given when our daughter, Shantel, first started attending The Foundation For Blind Children after she lost her sight, due to cancer, at the age of two. I want to share that article here so Shantel will always have it, and for any of my readers who might find it useful. I’ve read this article so many times over the years and it always helped me put things into perspective. While this speaks of raising a child with a disability, I think the same principles can apply to many other life situations… See what you think.

Welcome to Holland“, by Emily Perl Kingsley

I am often asked to describe the experience of raising a child with a disability. To try to help people who have not shared that unique experience to understand it, to imagine how it would feel, It’s like this……

When you’re going to have a baby, it’s like planning a fabulous vacation trip to Italy. You buy a bunch of guide books and make your wonderful plans. The Coliseum. Michelangelo’s David. The gondolas in Venice. You may learn some handy phrases in Italian. It’s all very exciting.

After months of eager anticipation, that day finally arrives. You pack your bags and off you go. Several hours later, the plane lands. The stewardess comes in and says, “Welcome to Holland.”

“Holland!?” you say. What do you mean, Holland? I signed up for Italy! I’m supposed to be in Italy. All my life I’ve dreamed of going to Italy.”

But there’s been a change in the flight plan. They’ve landed in Holland and there you must stay.

The important thing is that they haven’t taken you to a horrible, disgusting, filthy place full of pestilence, famine and disease. It’s just a different place.

So you must go out and buy new guidebooks. And you must learn a whole new language. And you will meet a whole new group of people you would never have met.

It’s just a different place. It’s slower paced than Italy, less flashy than Italy. But after you’ve been there for a while and you catch your breath, you look around and you begin to notice that Holland has windmills, Holland has tulips. Holland even has Rembrandt’s.

But everyone you know is busy coming and going from Italy, and they’re all bragging about what a wonderful time they had there. And for the rest of your life, you will say, “Yes, that’s where I was supposed to go. That’s what I had planned.”

And the pain of that will never, ever go away, because the loss of that dream is a very significant loss.

But if you spend your life mourning the fact that you didn’t get to Italy, you may never be free to enjoy the very special, the very lovely things about Holland.

September is Childhood Cancer Month. I dedicate this post to all who have fought cancer, and to those who are still fighting… Share the awareness, pray for a cure until this too is just a “bump in the road” and not a life changing event .

Stay Tuned!

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2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. gotham girl
    Sep 14, 2013 @ 13:42:42

    Outstanding. Just outstanding. xoxo MORE

    Reply

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