We gathered one last time at my house recently for closure. Although the group will go on, it will look different, and that's not a good thing or a bad thing, it's just what it is: change. The women had organized a really nice party for me, complete with cake and gifts, and the sweetest of sweet cards letting me know just how much the group has meant to them. It's meant a lot to me, too. And it's so true that 'tis more blessed to give than to receive, I, by far, have been the one most to benefit from the group.
One of the things that really touched me was some of the women that hadn't been in a really long time (like 2 years), came. It was so good to see them, and it felt like going to a reunion, where you are able to find out all of the things that have happened to them and their families since the last time you gathered. One woman had a daughter with a seizure disorder, she stopped coming to meeting when her daughter got so sick she wasn't able to go to school anymore. A year ago that sweet angel died. We sent cards, flowers, our prayers, and some of us went to the funeral.
That woman came to our last gathering and when we asked her how she, her husband and older child had picked up the pieces and moved on after their tragedy, she said they were all doing well. They realized they had more to give. More time. More money. More care. More love. They were going to adopt a child with special needs, an older child, maybe even siblings needing a home. The adoption was moving along and they were to the home visit stage. This was going to happen. They had their eyes wide open and knew what they were getting themselves into. They were ready. They were not shriveling up and closing themselves up. They were throwing wide their arms and saying, "YES!"
I've always felt that the only thing harder than having a child with special needs, would be not having that child with special needs. Unimaginable. This family has taken the unimaginable and made everyone that knows them reconsider what there is to imagine, what is possible.
Carrie is a parent and an advocate of a child with special needs and even more special gifts. She blogs at http://carrielink.blogspot.com/ where this is pretty much her favorite topic.