For 2018

"Life is lived forward, but understood backward. It is not until we are down the road and we stand on the mountain looking back through the valley that we can appreciate the terrain God has allowed us to scale.” Jill Savage

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Welcome to Holland by Emily Perl Kingley

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 guidebooks and make wonderful plans. The Coliseum. The Michelangelo David. The gondolas in Venice. You may learn some handy phrases in Italian. It’s all very exciting.

After months of eager anticipation, the 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 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 but 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… and 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, ever, ever go away… because of the loss of that dream is a very, 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 lovely things… about Holland.

By Emily Perl Kingsley

You know some people learn that and others live a life time and never get it.

I learned a long time ago that I live in Holland and that's more than okay with me. In fact my real maiden name was Holland. How's that? And Holland, while not Italy, and I'd love to go to Italy, sometimes I feel I'd love to run away to Italy, but for right now I'm in Holland. And Holland is a wonderful place.


^..^ Corgi Dog Mama said...

Finally, I got here today!
This, like you said, this one was for us.
I sometimes still, look at my boy, and wonder, boy...if he's this much now, what would he have been? It doesn't matter though, he is what and who he is, and it's enough. It's what God had in mind. And, he is surrounded by angels. I've always felt that about him.....and, what's wrong with that?

Chatty Crone said...

I'm sure he's someones angel too.

Buddha said...

I see a lot of parents pushing the children to be the first or the best, it is like a competition on who has the best kid and I never understood why they are doing it. Certainly the kids are not enjoying it.
I love my children because I love them and they love me back and that is what it maters to me.
You can go to Italy and have a miserable time - like I did it 5 years ago when Italy had a record heat wave - or you can be in Holland and have the best time of your life.
I think the experience you have is the one that really counts not the physical place!

Chatty Crone said...

AMEN! I really do believe that too. You can find happiness where ever you are - IF you work at looking for it - there will be your peace.