Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Through my eyes...

The eyes of this Mom who has four amazing children...two of whom happen to have some special needs...has viewed the world oh-so-differently in the last 12 years.

At first, it was just funny things...from all the "three" nursery rhymes -- THREE little pigs, THREE blind mice, THREE little bears, etc, to how often silly romance novels end with the main character expecting TWINS...or triplets! The ultimate happily-ever-after ending! (I agree by the way...but still...)

And then we learned about my boys having cerebral palsy. All of a sudden the things I was noticing were not funny....I was desperate to glimpse any children with special needs.

Wade and I were at a medical conference in Orlando when the triplets were two and of course we took a day for some couple time at Disney World. I will never forget that day. We were watching one of the performances and Disney had a sign language interpreter performing the entire thing for a group of children who could not hear the words for themselves. I cried through the entire performance. Thankfully, my wonderful husband understood. Our children do not have hearing issues, but I knew if Disney did for these....they would do for our's and the knowledge simply overwhelmed me (now you have a small glimpse into our love of all things Mickey!).

Sesame Street -- a favorite from my childhood already -- became a household favorite because I knew their commitment to show children with varying levels of "ability".

But then some unexpected surprises occurred....I was reminded of one of these yesterday while snuggling with my current 4-yr-old and watching some Sprout....

Dragon Tales -- a PBS cartoon that my trio adored -- aired with a dragon in a wheelchair. I loved the episode and so did my kids. Yesterday, Cate was watching the same episode....she looked at me and said, "Mommy, look, he is just like Benjamin!" And I was reminded...

So I began to search...because back then....when my kids were three adorable pre-schoolers (oh, they are still adorable...but that preschool cuteness is so good...ya know?) we discovered Franklin, the Turtle. Oh my goodness, I love this turtle. One of Franklin's best friends is Badger....she's playing the xylophone in the photo....and do you see it? Badger uses crutches (we call them Power Sticks) to ambulate AND if you are looking you will notice that she even wears orthotics on her legs. For years, we would go to the bookstore and I would sit on the floor in the children's section poring through ALL the Franklin books for ones that had Badger in them so that we could OWN them!
So today, I am thankful for the blessing of inspired writers and producers that understand that there are many children who need positive affirmation that they are perfect just like they are....and many Mommies who need it right there with them.


Kristin said...

You are a wonderful mother. I am always in awe of the way you handle circumstances in your life. You kids are just as amazing as you are. You are doing a fantastic job raising them and letting them know that God has a plan for them. He made them so they can love, give and serve others and they do a great job at that. Keep encouraging them, loving them and keep up the great work as a Mom. Hugs!!! PS Wade's not so bad either (ha ha).