My favourite (and most supportive) editor, Louise Kinross, at Holland Bloorview’s Bloom blog, asked me for a piece that gave an update about The Invisible Mom. I wrote Looking Up over the holidays, and it was published on Friday.
The comments have been kind, but to be truthful, when I wrote the Invisible Mom a year and a half ago, I was MAD ALL THE TIME and not in very good shape. This kind of permanent outrage bled into other parts of my life, and I was in a constant simmering rage, waiting passively for the world to become more tolerant and accepting of my young son. The stark reality was that change wasn’t happening on its own.
This kind of anger is exhausting. I was fearful of becoming a mean, bitter mom. I cannot tell you how much better I feel because I examined my own role in Aaron’s exclusion. I found something I could actually do about it – help start a Family Inclusion Group at the school and finally connect with other moms – and this is a such big relief. Of note: I have not done this on my own. There are five of us ‘founders’ – each bringing our own energy and diverse perspectives to the group. We also partnered with the school administration – one Assistant Principal in particular has been collaborative and responsive to us Also, our school trustee is a champion of inclusion and attended our first meeting – how great is that?
I read this super quote somewhere a long time ago. It is from a dad who had a child with special needs:
When my son was born, I wanted him to change so he could be accepted in the world. Then I wanted the world to change so they would accept him. Now I know that it is ME that has to change.
Isn’t that lovely? Words to live by. Let’s keep chipping away at change in this messed up, beautiful world. Let’s also borrow from the Serenity Prayer, and accept what we cannot change, and have the courage to change the things we can. Let’s do it together. xo.