Monday, April 23, 2012


One of my friends, Nick Sigur has a Christian blog where he notes his progress in his walk. Lately Nick has been feeling a bit useless because of a bum knee. In his last blog he discovered " Every day is work day. Don't judge your capacity. It is not about what we can do. It's about what He can do through us. The more useless we appear, the greater His glory."
Working with disabled kids, I replied "I 'coulda tol' ya' some o'that!"
 Sometimes it's my job to advocate for them and explain what they CAN do in a class of sighted peers when the teacher and sometimes a principal is assuming what they cannot do at first glance. Some of the kids I have will try anything because no one ever told them they couldn't. Like  a handful of my former students who were told "Hey! You can't run track!"  and they did!
But when I get a parent who is still grieving the 'loss' of that 'normal' child they were expecting and instead they received a 'damaged' child they fail to see the gift and put limits on the child before they can even grow to understand their own differences. Those are my handicapped kids--the ones who have been told all their lives what they cannot do--and are not allowed to get dirty, bump into things, play with other kids, cross a street. It's like the story my dad used to say about the bee: aerodynamically the bee is not built to fly. But bees don't know their build is s'pose ta be a limitation. So they fly.
Some of my kids have multi-disabilities and when people look at them, they get sad and say, "Oh poor thing!" But if you should ever step into the classroo and if they can see you--or if you should touch a hand and sing a song, their faces light up as if you're the most importan person in the world! To me their faces are a reminder of God who looks at each of and smiles. That's a gift!  No matter what you think you look like, he is smiling on you and wants you to feel  His smile.
Sometimes he sends an angel or two to smile at you and remind you that you are worthy of his love, his forgiveness, his loving care. Hebrews 13:3 tells us that. So I believe I am blessed to see angels in my life every day! I do believe they come in the bodies of multi-disabled children to teach us about ourselves and our connections to others through Him.
My babies that don't see, walk or talk are very often happy. They don't know they are disabled. They don't dwell on what they cannot do and don't know that some people think they should be sad because of their disabilities. In that way they have so much to teach us and I have learned so much from them over the years.
If one of these is your child, continue to let them fly. If you're one of my friends, reading this and feeling sorry for what you can't do--take a lesson from "The Kids and the Bees." Stop bemoaning what you think you can't do because someone told you that you couldn't!  Fly!

Visual Impairments Specialist Scotlandville Elementary

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