After 16 years, the "what if?" moments should be gone. We have adjusted to our life as a family of a child with a disability. And yes, we have grown because of it, and we haven't let it define our family (I don't think).
But I must admit those “what if?” days still creep in out of nowhere and take me by surprise.
My son is a freshman at his high school. And although he's in a special education class, I get reminded by other students that he is, in fact, 16. There is always a golf cart parked outside his class. He has become obsessed with it. One day I realized, holy cow, he's 16. He should be working on getting his driver's license. No wonder he’s obsessed with the golf cart
But that won't ever be happening.
The seniors at the school are now getting ready to turn in their cap and gown order forms. We won't be doing that either.
Then there's always the big question: What would our family be like without Jac's disabilities?
When I start having my pity party, I slap myself and realize that life shouldn't be about the “what ifs?” It is about where we are and how far we have come because of Jac's disability.
Our family unit is stronger. We do travel and have learned to find new ways to have fun that include Jac. We have learned that life isn't about money. And the money spent is a necessity in keeping Jac here and well. Over the years, we have learned to prepare for seizures or meltdowns. We have adapted well.
A love I never knew possible replaces the “what if?” thoughts. We appreciate every good day that comes along. And most importantly, we have a love for this child that is immeasurable!
Having a child with a disability changes your life expectations. It requires adjustment and adapting to life.