I can't help but feel a little bittersweet seeing all of these homecoming posts on Facebook. I'm keeping in mind that he still has 2 more years of high school left. 2 more years of growing, maturing, etc. But I also can't help but feel like he's missing out on some fun times, too. :\
I hate for him that he misses out on so much that goes on around him. But at the same time, am THANKFUL for that. There is so much we don't want our kids exposed to, and fortunately, he misses that part, as well.
I hate for him that other kids don't know how to handle him, work with him, talk with him, etc. I hate for him that he doesn't know how to be more forward and outgoing (this is not without trying! I mean, LOOK WHO HIS MOM IS).
I hate for him that he hates going to school so much. I mean, we all did (well, most of us), but he has a whole other set of reasons for hating it.
We just want our kids to have a great childhood, have good friends, and great experiences. It's no different with kids who have challenges like mine does. Just by looking at him, people don't UNDERSTAND that he has these challenges, because he looks just like everyone else. That's the struggle with hearing/vision impaired people. They look like nothing is wrong with them. They aren't ignoring you, they just haven't heard you (clearly, properly, at all). They aren't ignoring you, they just can't see you waving from across the room, or 2 rows over. They aren't ignoring you, they just can't quickly see your hand extended for a shake.
He's 16 years old. What do all 16 year olds (especially boys) want to do the most? Drive. It's very uncertain that he will ever be able to do that. He will never play football like he wants to; he can't see to catch, but has an AMAZING arm. He can't do any contact sports, due to his (amazing) Cochlear implants.
He can't see in the dark to play laser tag or the like. He has no depth perception, thanks to glaucoma and optic nerve damage. He can see out of one eye well. The other one, he can only see shapes/shadows/light peripherally.
There are so many things other kids are doing that they take for granted. Brady can't do most of them due to his vision. Just running wildly amok can prove hazardous (and has in the past. Brady's face, meet low hanging branch! O_o)
He loves the military, but will never be accepted into the military.
Everything he wants to do, he can't because of one of his challenges.
How frustrating would THAT be?? I mean, have you ever stopped to think about not being able to do your favorite thing because of a physical challenge?? Have you ever stopped to think how it would be to have both hearing and vision impaired?? Have you ever stopped to think HOW IN THE WORLD DID HELEN KELLER DO IT? She was a crabby one, understandably so! I get it! And she was COMPLETELY BLIND AND DEAF. Brady is blessed with Cochlear Implants and some vision. I can't BELIEVE how easy he is with all this. If it were me, I would not handle it so well. He's amazing.
I just get so frustrated FOR him. I want so much for him to ENJOY his teen years and have great friends and do fun things. I don't know how to help him do that. And that frustrates ME. Especially as as a single parent.
I am confident that he is destined for great things. It certainly stands to reason he went through all of that so he could handle anything that comes at him. I just want people to see him for WHO HE IS, not what he lacks. They would be amazed at what they find.