Saturday, July 10, 2010

It's Nothing, Really...

There are certain things parents just don't talk about with their children. Heck, there are certain things people don't talk about with other people! Not bad things. Just personal things. It's the social norm to just leave some topics to one's self.

Likewise with spina bifida. There are certain aspects of this birth defect that those who have it simply don't talk about. Not bad things. Just personal things. Similar things, in fact, to "regular" things that "normal" people don't tend to talk about with others. Immediate family members know the specifics. Close but not-so-immediate family members most likely even know. And possibly even very close friends. But, really, these are things that the person with spina bifida lives with but does not discuss.

So, obviously, I'm not about to divulge here what exactly I'm talking about. Most likely my readers with spina bifida will understand what I'm leaving out. But no one else needs to know.

At the same time... these are things that make up who I am, as every day and natural (to me) as they are. Things that are fundamentally different for me from "normal" people about how I get through each day. And because what I'm (not) talking about is such a fundamental life issue, I feel that Sweetie needs to know about how my life is different from others' in this respect. If for no other reason than just so she knows... you know?

I know for sure that, for instance, all my aunts and uncles know of what I speak. And, therefore, I assume that all my cousins know as well. But I didn't tell them. Their parents must have. Or my parents? But when? And how? Under what circumstances? Or maybe some of them don't even know. Or many some of them researched/figured it out for themselves. I really can't be sure, since - again - this is not something that I tend to discuss with most people.

Googling anything like "how to talk to your child about..." this subject results in entry after entry of teaching the child with spina bifida how to manage this subject for themselves. And again I am angered and befuddled by how prevalent the topic of kids with spina bifida is on the internet as opposed to adults - let alone parents! - with spina bifida. It's seriously as if "they" think that kids with spina bifida never grow up to be adults with spina bifida. Hmmmpph. Well, if that's the case, no one ever gave me the memo!

Anyway... I am wondering more and more these days about how to broach this subject with Sweetie. It's nothing, I feel, that needs to be a serious come-here-and-sit-down-I-have-something-I-want-to-talk-to-you-about discussion. But to bring it up just randomly at the dinner table or something, and make light of it as best as possible, doesn't seem completely likely to happen and certainly not natural.

... Although that, in the end, will probably be how it happens, more or less. And since hubby, of course, knows of what I speak, and since he's the Silly Daddy, I presume his assistance with this not-really-a-discussion-discussion will be helpful in getting Sweetie to not make too much of a big deal out of it. Not worrying her, not having her spend more time than necessary thinking about this, and not having her look at me any differently is my hope. And I'm sure Hubby's involvement will only help this goal come to fruition.

Time will tell, I guess, how it all goes down.

Here's hoping it all doesn't go down the toilet, like so many things do...

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