Roller Coaster

12 Feb

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Each day came with an anticipation of ways to fill the day with two young children and ended with a feeling that I wasn’t doing enough. My mind was full of contradictions and confusion. I looked forward to going to work, but hated taking care of other people’s babies when mine seemed to need so much. I liked to stay at home with my kids, but I wanted to get out of the house and try to focus on something else. However nothing seemed to be able to tear my mind away from focusing on what I should be, could be, or would be doing if things had turned out differently.

Oli was actually a very happy and easy baby. When she learned to smile she smiled all of the time. She started to coo and babble, giggle, reach for toys, and bounce in her bouncy seat. She seemed to be developing as a regular baby despite her blindness. By the time she was 5 months old and meeting her developmental milestones I wondered if maybe the doctors were wrong. Maybe despite all of her quirks she was actually pretty typical. I still worried about her, but I had a little bit of hope again that her blindness would be her only hurdle in life. I was slightly more comfortable with the idea of her disability and even began to enjoy hearing stories about inspiring blind adults and children. I would think, Yes, Oli can do those things too!

But then I would remember that the specialists had warned me that the developmental gap between her and other children would only widen as she got older. My life had become a series of these highs and lows. I would just reach the top of one peak only to come crashing down the other side.

You see I was on a roller coaster ride and I couldn’t figure out how to get off.

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