Liam has had his powerchair for sometime now. He proved to be a very precise driver, with mature spacial sense. His school principal even remarked on how impressed he was with Liam’s driving skills. Liam also recognizes that this tool doesn’t solve all his problems. It’s bulky, the world is not set up for wheels, and our home is not going to cut it.
This mother now lives with a new sense of guilt. When I imagine a vacation away from our familiar spots all I see are barriers that I need to overcome so that my child can simply live. I am up for the challenge, but I also resent my younger self for never seeing these issues. I didn’t hold enough doors open for people and I didn’t speak up when a building was inaccessible.
I also feel very proud that I am far more intentional about my hours and days. When I see something, I say something. I have a thousand reasons to be mad at what hardships Liam and our family have been given. Yet, I feel happier and more comfortable in the past year than I ever have in my life. This shift in perspective has been life changing and I’m proud of myself.
A common issue in the MD community is that children stop getting invited to birthday parties, or over for playdates around this age. People don’t know what children with MD are capable of, so they assume that parties including trampolines, pools or race tracks are off limits. I’m thankful for the thought that parents of Liam’s friends put into Liam’s well being. They call ahead of time to be sure that accommodations will work. They check out their own home and tell me of any issues that may arise. They keep including him. I hope this continues for many years to come, because we will always find a way to include Liam in any activity.