Disability doesn't have to be debilitating. Disability only means finding a different approach or way around life's curves. One must find a way to get to the end of the road by hopping, using a cane, wheelchair or being carried by God.
How many people without arms have learned to drive, paint, write or other with their feet? Technolgy has made it
easier for us now more than ever before in history. What is stopping you from going forward? What is stopping you from helping
your son, daughter, grandaughter, student, or patient? Do you make excuses for them? Do you let the stagnate? High
expectations will help them reach their full potential.
My husband and I have gone head to head on these questions over and over. I tend to be the pusher and my
husband the "Disney Dad." That is all well and good if you have a child that can reach his full potential through learning
from others. A special needs child or differently abled child needs even sterner goals and directions in my opinon.
My son is an only child. There are no close relatives that can monitor his progress or look in on him once his parents are gone. He will be on his
own once my husband and I die. My son has shown me over and over he is capable. Go and get a copy of Wanda
Draper's book, "YOUR CHILD IS SMARTER THAN YOU THINK!" She is an internationally know Child Development
Expectations are what you will get from your children. My son can wash his clothes, vacuum, unload the
diswasher, or baically any household chore. When it comes to mowing the yard or other chore that deals with a male
oriented task ( my husband interfered on me showing him); my son, Tanner, is at a lose as how to proceed.
Do you know why my son can do the things I mentioned above? I showed him how to do them. You can do this too.
Now I will insert the story of an 85 year old premie child that wasn't supposed to be according to her doctor's when
she was born and through a few life events. My mother, Dorothy Mallo, was born early before the fullterm of a
pregnancy. One way to give you an idea of how small she was is to tell you they used my grandfather's hankerchiefs for
diapers because nothing else seemed to fit. Dorothy was born with a club foot and the growth in one leg had to be
stopped because one leg had stopped growing.
Dorothy had many surgeies at the Shriner's Hospital's. This meant spending a year away from home. Dorothy
often had to walk to school on crutches. Did it ever occur to her or her family she was disabled and completely debilitated?
Dorothy went on to graduate from high school and then on to Secretary College (which now I understand would be
the equivalent of an Associates Degree). Dorothy continued to work, marry, have four children and do many things
that any normal person did.
How come these issues didn't beat her down? What did Dorothy do that many others would not? What is the
formula for keeping your disabilites from making you debilitated?
Could it be attitude? Your family support system? I feel these are part of the answer. I also know it has to do
with the times. I think society makes more excuses for people with disabilites and has lowered expectations. They give
the lowest of jobs to these kids on Individual Educational Plans sometiimes; and on Employee Plans with Voccational Rehab plans.
Remember Dorothy the next time you let your disability hold you back. My mom has never let her disabilities stop
her from doing anything she wanted to do in life. I hold her up as an example to many.