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A Footballer or a Doctor?

Posted on: February 7, 2012

We all have dreams and aspirations for our children even before they are conceived.

A footballer, a doctor, teacher, accountant – the list goes on.

When you have a child with Autism, it forces you to look at life from a different perspective, in many ways you grieve for the child you dreamed of having, the child you’ll never have. Its hard to deal with and of course very emotional.

Autism changes your life!

But I’ve learned that not all is bad – a lot can change in a short period of time, for example; 6 months ago I thought A, would never speak, I was literally convinced. Now he is making more noises/sounds and copying words we say directly to him, he’s really surprised us.

Even though he has a disability which so far in life has meant he hasn’t had any speech and social interaction is a nonentity, amongst other things – he can still achieve what i once thought would only remain a dream – Autistic children can still achieve dreams.

Now I’ve fully come to terms with Alfies Autism I know he will grow into a wonderfuI young man and continue to make us so proud each day and from this I have decided that…..

I just want A to be one thing in life, and that is…

HAPPY

L x

& from this post, I wanted to share with you all one of my favourite poems that I think best describes the feelings mentioned above. (Some of you may already be familiar with it)

Welcome to Holland ~ ⁠Written by Emily Perl Kingsley.

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 your 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 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 some horrible, disgusting, filthy place, full of pestilence, famine and disease. It’s just a different place.

So you must go out and buy a new guidebook. 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 Rembrandts.

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.”

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.

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4 Responses to "A Footballer or a Doctor?"

It’s amazing how you change your dreams in light of a diagnosis – we’ve gone from footballer to living independently!! But every little step towards that dream means so much more now 🙂

I agree with you so much! Im glad you could relate to the post, and thank you for your comment – its means a lot! X

I love that poem! I have read that before. I know the pain that comes with realizing that your child will not have the future you dreamed of. K will never live on his own, or have a job, get married, have children and his chances of getting Alzheimers is very high. That is where you learn to celebrate each and every accomplishment, no matter how small. But no one knows really what the future holds.

Wow, that poem is fantastic, spoke volumes to me! Thanks for bringing it to my attention! Your post also spoke out to me, all the things i thought C could be, is unlikely, but like you with A, i just want him to be happy.
Anna x

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