Monday, September 15, 2008

The 5 minute pity party

Welcome to Holland by Emily Kingsley

When you're going to have a baby, it's like planning a fabulous vacation trip - to Italy. You buy a bunch of guide books and make your wonderful plans. The Coliseum. The Michelangelo David. The gondolas in Venice. You may learn some handy phrases in Italian. It's all very exciting.

Months of eager anticipation, the day finally arrives. You pack your bags and off you go. Several hours later, the plane lands. The stewardess comes in and says, "Welcome to Holland."

"Holland?!?" you say. "What do you mean Holland?? I signed up for Italy! I'm supposed to be in Italy. All my life I've dreamed of going to Italy."

But there's been a change in the flight plan. They've landed in Holland and there you must stay.

The important thing is that they haven't taken you to a horrible, disgusting, filthy place, full of pestilence, famine and disease. It's just a different place.

So you must go out and buy new guide books. And you must learn a whole new language. And you will meet a whole new group of people you would never have met.

It's just a different place. It's slower-paced than Italy, less flashy than Italy. But after you've been there for a while and you catch your breath, you look around.... and you begin to notice that Holland has windmills....and Holland has tulips. Holland even has Rembrandts.

But everyone you know is busy coming and going from Italy... and they're all bragging about what a wonderful time they had there. And for the rest of your life, you will say "Yes, that's where I was supposed to go. That's what I had planned."

And the pain of that will never, ever, ever, ever go away... because the loss of that dream is a very very significant loss.

But... if you spend your life mourning the fact that you didn't get to Italy, you may never be free to enjoy the very special, the very lovely things ... about Holland.

I first read this shortly after WG was born. I looked it up tonight because I am throwing myself a 5 minute pity party. I'm sad that we are still in Holland. I thought for sure we would have hopped a plane to Italy by now. I'm very excited about pre-school and I think it will be an amazing thing for WG. I'm happy she qualified, but at the same time, I WISH she hadn't. When we were first married and Tim was working at the school, we never dreamed we would have a child enrolled there. No one does, I guess. I think the reason I'm needing my 5 minute pity party is because when I explain the pre-K situation to people, no one expresses disbelief that WG qualified. It's a really stupid thing to be wallowing over: we are very confident that this is the right place for her... I guess it's along the lines of a woman complaining about a dress making her look fat and then getting mad when her husband agrees. Silly? Very. Which is why my pity party was limited to 5 minutes only.

It's not a tragedy. Life goes on, we adjust and adapt. I really like tulips, anyway.

1 comment:

bjmfeagans said...

Adapt and overcome...that's what preemie mom's do isn't it?{{hugs}}