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Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Bittersweet

So I went to a concert today at Hillary's school to see her perform with the chorus. They did a program about Martin Luther King, Jr. It was nice, and they had Hillary with her aide on stage with the chorus and she was playing a drum and a tambourine. As I sat there I was torn between being happy that she was being actively included in something that she obviously enjoyed, and feeling kind of sad and tired of watching Hillary doing pretty much the same thing and feeling like I was pretending that she could really do it herself. It was bittersweet to be sure. Most of what I do with Hillary is bittersweet. Happy that she is being given the chance to do "normal" things and have a happy life, sad that she can't enjoy them the same way that I would. But if she is enjoying things in her own way, why should that be sad? We all experience life in a slightly different way, no two people take the same thing away from a shared experience.

1 comment:

Lisa said...

You said Hillary was happy and enjoying herself AND she was being INCLUDED with the other, aka, "typical" kids. That in itself has to be of some comfort, right? No one can ever tell you that what you feel is right or wrong, nor should they judge - especially if they do not have a special child, so your feelings are always going to be there. Sometimes they will be stronger than others. However, I know seeing Erik participate with other 'typical' peers, included, part of the group would melt my heart and bring me joy like little else could. I am SO happy that the school has been so wonderful and the children so accepting and loving towards Hillary. I remember you telling me how being her helper was a privilege that they enjoyed. I am so so happy for you and Hilly when I read this because that is what I wanted more than anything for Erik yet never got. He has never been included.
Hold on to that joy that you see and know that she is happy. She may not realize that she is any 'different' than the other kids, and in so many ways this is a blessing to not realize it.
However, I totally agree and feel the bittersweet feelings constantly. They are normal for us. We want the best for our kids, special or typical, but on the flip side, a happy, healthy child who is accepted by her peers for who she is, is probably the happiest child on earth!
I feel like we can love our child to pieces (:, but it's the rest of the world who truly are the cause for the pain I feel that Erik is different. If he was treated as an equal more than he is, there would be far less of these bittersweet feelings. Does that make sense?