I often wonder what she’ll be like when she grows up. If I ever see an adult with mental retardation out in public, I find myself staring. Will she be like that? Will she be “worse” or “better”? Will she have a job? Friends? A boyfriend? Independence? It’s enough to drive a mother crazy.
Imagine my surprise when tuning in to Parenthood a couple of weeks ago and the episode was about this very subject. (Are you watching this show yet?) I really could have used an intervention while watching it because it was so authentic to what I feel. They were throwing a party for their son, Max, who has Asperger’s Syndrome. The entertainer also had Asperger’s but it took the parents a while to realize it. They almost couldn’t handle it. This guy was “weird” and quirky and didn’t act “normal”. It was a harsh realization for them. However, by the end of the episode, they realized that the entertainer was really happy. He had a job, he lived on his own and was happy. They realized that’s all that matters.
That show hits home for me every week in some way. But this episode really hit hard. I often wonder what the boys will be like too when they grow up, but with Olivia, it’s just different. I try not to think about it but sometimes it just can’t be avoided.
I just focus on the now as much as I can. That’s all you can do sometimes, right?