Monday, March 8, 2010

What dreams may (not) come.

Prom. First date. Driving. Periods. Boys. Marriage. Babies. The list can go on and on.

I often wonder how much Nicole will be able to do. She is not physically handicapped. She really is not "dumb" by any stretch of the imagination. She simply does not get most things. We have strong feeling she may have Aspergers Syndrome.

I am guilty of thinking, at times, that she may just be the ditzy blonde trophy wife type. Other times, she seems to tune into certain things and I am all but certain she will be a genius.

Yesterday, while letting her "drive" in the driveway it dawned on me.. She does not have an attention span the size of a goldfish. How will she ever be able to drive? Cook? Finish school?

Though nothing but fate knows what Nicole will do or be as an adult. I just can't help but wonder if we are both going to miss out on some of the most important female milestones.

A friend recently brought up the notion of celebrating Menarche with her daughter. That is something I would like to do with Nicole but that also opens a door to a host of other "what-ifs" and "could be's". Will she understand its importance? Will she want children? Will she be capable of really caring for and nurturing her children? Will she find someone to love her and care for her the way she deserves, despite her problems?

Prom. Will she have a date? I know all too well the side effects on ones self esteem that come from having certain problems society deems "strange". Will she sit at home that Friday night, dateless & depressed? Or will I have to spend $500.00 on a dress she will never wear again? Hopefully, the latter. It would be the best $500.00 I could ever spend.

Nicole is so beautiful and so caring. She has the most beautiful eyes and she is full of energy and sass. Are my dreams for her her dreams for herself?

As mothers, we are conditioned to start day-dreaming of our children's futures from the days before they are even born. What will they look like? What will they be like? Who will they marry? How many children will call me "Grandma"?

Even though I have three other children, it is a devastating thought that Nicole might not have children. I tend to compare it to learning that your child is gay. The day dreams have been there all along, and though it might be sad because what you imagined your child's future to be like is not how they see it; it is also a wonderful new side of the fence that you get to explore together.

In the end, what is more important for your child? To be loved no matter what road they voluntarily or involuntarily travel? Or to spend your days in sorrow over your perceived loss?