We're spending most weekends this winter up in New Hampshire. At 37 years old, I am just learning to ski and have taken my first few lessons. Jenna and Tanner ski with Eric almost every weekend and, at 6 and 4 years old, are probably already better skiers than I'll ever be. But, that's beside the point. What I keep wondering is - will Brennan be able to join in this family activity?
On Saturday, I took Jenna skiing by myself for the first time. As we entered the lodge in the morning, there were differently-abled people EVERYWHERE! People with one leg, with one arm, in wheelchairs, without sight. Jenna quickly noticed. I've been trying to teach her about differences. I've emphasized that people shouldn't be judged or limited based on what is perceived as different about them. This moment in the lodge was a great example of that. We were surrounded by a group of people who were probably told they wouldn't be able to do alot of things due to their differences. But, here they were on a snowy winter morning getting ready for a day of skiing. I felt so proud it brought tears to my eyes. I wonder if I would have felt the same way before I had Brennan? Part of me thinks I would have felt sad or sorry for this group of people and their differences. Or maybe I wouldn't have paid much attention at all.
As Jenna and I were getting ready to go, I did spot a girl with Down syndrome putting on her winter gear and ski boots. If Jenna hadn't been with me, I definitely would have stayed and followed her outside to watch her ski - but an anxious 6 year old tugging at my jacket made that impossible.
So, will Brennan be able to ski? Only time will tell - but we will give him every opportunity to learn if he's willing.