I want to walk


Ella in her stroller wheelchair

Navigating life as a special need parent can be simultaneously exhausting and overwhelming. Even just realizing how inaccessible the city is can feel downright depressing as you start to think about how much it will effect your kid as they start to grow up.

We definitely take our triumphs wherever we can; Ella started drinking from a straw! But, the hits always seem to keep coming.

Last week, we were all out and about with Raegan and Braeden running around like the hooligans that they are when Ella said, “I want to walk.” It came almost from nowhere and left me slightly dazed for a minute. What do I say to her? What do I do? She’s so observant and notices the differences between her and other kids, and I hate that. I hate that I can’t just say ok! And grab her from the stroller and watch all three run and play together. 

Instead, I mustered “I know you do, and soon you’ll be walking even more in your walker.” I know it wasn’t the answer she was hoping for and definitely wasn’t the answer I wanted to give, but what else is there? I want her to walk and run and play and dance and maybe one day she will do all those things, but I don’t know that and I can’t tell her she will in the same way that her siblings do. 

And yet, that desire to do those things will get her far in life. I always knew she’d cheekishly flash her middle finger to all her naysayers as she learned new things, she is like her mama after all.

But those questions are coming, I know they are. Questions about being different, and her telling me she wanted to walk just told me how unprepared I am for that and how little I really know about this journey we’re on together. But that’s the thing, we are in this together, no matter what, together.

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