Halloween has always been my favorite holiday — dressing up, hanging out with friends, getting rewarded for light exercise with an insane amount of candy.
When I had my son, Tanner, Halloween was a whole new experience; I loved watching him get immersed in this experience. Trips to the pumpkin patch, picking his costume and planning out our trick-or-treat route. It was amazing to me how his little legs could carry him through streets much longer than mine could carry me.
When we had Annebelle, a whole new Halloween door was opened, with princess costumes and fairies and someone to match costumes with me. I finally get a year where I don’t have to be a prisoner or a race car driver or a fireman.
I anxiously waited as a nurse waved an ultrasound wand over my belly- after raising a boy for two years I was beyond excited to learn I was having a little girl. I could already see us twirling around in tutus, going to ballet and having a little princess following my every move. The ultrasound showed no obvious problems and at twenty weeks we were confident that the threat of miscarriage was behind us. I finally let my guard down and celebrated this beautiful baby girl growing inside me. When Annebelle was diagnosed with epilepsy and developmental delays were expected our world was forever changed. Walking into the NICU while my daughter was pushed on a gurney by paramedics was surreal, she was born perfectly healthy four glorious days ago.
I have thought about writing this post for a long time but couldn't quite figure out how to do it. While visiting my brother and his wife we met Mahli, We were so excited because Mauli had a walker just like Annie. We had assumed that Mahli had CP because it was the only diagnosis I had ever seen use a walker but I was wrong- Mahli needs her walker for a clubbed foot. This misunderstanding prompted my sister-in-law to ask how we prefer to be asked about our child’s disability and both Mahli’s mom and I just stood and thought for a second. Curiosity is normal. When you see a child in a wheelchair or with a walker or with braces on their legs it is natural to wonder. There are times when investigating your curiosity is totally fine but don't forget, curiosity killed the cat.