Saturday, January 5, 2013

Dream on

At the point Jude was released from the hospital and came home to join the family, Joanna and I were under the impression our young baby would have a much different developmental journey from that of his two older brothers and we would be dealing with surprises and delays as a result of his blindness.  Not knowing what to expect, surely, we thought, he'd have a markedly different childhood from a sighted child.

The afternoon he came home, his brothers went outside as they do, and began to play their version of baseball.  Watching from the family room window I cried, lamenting Jude would never join their game.  My cry wasn't about baseball, but more about Jude's chances at normalcy.  The typically developing child hits certain milestones and performs acts that build off of others.  Would our son be stunted and delayed, producing issues beyond, and stifled by, his blindness?

Shortly thereafter Jude began receiving services from the Children's Center for the Visually Impaired.  Joanna and I, during a meeting with its staff, expressed our varied and confused thoughts about raising a blind child.  All through the confusion, one thing was clear to us though, we would expect Jude not be a great blind person, but a great person.  We have all, CCVI included, proceeded with that aim and understanding.

When friends and colleagues ask about Jude, I know they are often asking about how he is developing as a blind child.  I find my answers to be very similar, however, to those I would give of our other boys, proud of developmental milestones achieved.  Outside of a few visually stimulated milestones, Jude continues to plug along, and delays seem few, a credit to many.  Jude's CCVI therapists, whom we love, do an incredible job anticipating obstacles and equipping our family.

When I think about the fears and concerns we held during Jude's early days, they were mostly about his future and what it held.  Today, a large part of me can't wait to view Jude as a mature man, as my dreams for him expand by the day.  We are fully aware that Jude will face obstacles and likely will never hit a curveball, but who doesn't face obstacles?  And, between you and me, I can't hit a curveball either.

St. Jude: Pray for us.

ps: Please mark your calendars for the 25th annual Trolley Run, April 28!  We can't wait.  Many of you deserve credit for helping our Jude and other children who receive services from the CCVI.  Your continued support of the Trolley Run will be beyond appreciated.  More on this later...

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