And while it does offer a glimpse of what our lives can be like, it kind of glosses over that initial adjustment phase, which, by the way, is an ongoing process and can pop up multiple times for many years after diagnosis.
To be totally truthful, our lives are messy.
Yes, we may one day reach a level of acceptance and we love our children no matter what, and we've learned valuable life lessons and good has come out of all of this. But I think all of us with special needs kiddos would take that diagnosis away in a heartbeat if we could. We are trying to make the best of what we've been given. We are trying to look beyond what the world sees as imperfection and really get to know our child's heart and soul.
And that can sound heroic or all butterflies and rainbows. But it's not. It's simply how we get through life, how we get through our day, and sometimes the next hour.
I found something online that's kind of a "spin-off" of the Welcome to Holland essay and I want to share it with you. Because I think it gives a more realistic picture of what it can be like when you first find out you're one of those people - a special needs parent.
Now I must first warn you of a couple things:
1. It would be good to re-read the Welcome to Holland essay first.
2. There are a couple of times that language I don't use is thrown around - remember I'm not the author!
3. This is not pretty, flowery reading. But it's pretty dog-gone close to the emotions I felt when I go back to the birth of Lily Bird and all her medical issues. And then again at 18 months when she started losing skills and we faced yet another hurdle(s) with her. And even some days still.
4. The author never mentions the Lord and of course, He is what saved me through all of this and helped me get out of the airport. And He is still the One who saves me when I find myself back at the airport some days. You'll understand after you read.
Before you can learn to love Holland, you must first get through Amsterdam International. (click on link)
Feel free to share any thoughts or comments and we'll talk some more about Holland and Amsterdam tomorrow.