Sometimes the future comes at us like an assault. A tornado of unanswerable questions that suggest chaos is about to ensue. That’s what it felt like when Penny was diagnosed with Down syndrome. And, to a lesser degree, that’s what it has felt like when we face all the questions about her life as an adult. Will she live with us? Will she go to college? Will she be able to find a job?
Throughout this season of wondering about the future, I’ve returned to those early years. I learned so much back then about how to envision a future filled with possibilities without fantasizing about a life that wouldn’t be. I learned about trusting in love instead of fear. I learned about the power of hope.
Nearly two decades ago, we decided to believe what other parents and activists in the disability space told us, that there was a good future ahead for our daughter and our family. We learned, step by step, how to live into that future. We are making the same choice now.
I want to share what we’ve learned so that other families can imagine and live into a good future for their families as well.
In March, I’m planning to film a four-part video teaching series called “Reimagining Family Life with Disability.” Right now, I’m sketching out the details of each video. I know what I want to cover—
- the myths and models of disability
- changing the mindset around disability
- building communities of support
- envisioning and moving towards a good future as a family
Is there anything you’d like me to cover as I prepare to share what we’ve learned?
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