This week I was asked by a parent why I didn’t just acceptdisability. I was also told by a professional that she believes that achild IS her disability. They are concepts that I have grappled with formany years.
It cannot be denied that we do not live in a perfect world and thatwe do not always possess all of the skills we require in order to thrivein every environment. We do, though, possess the tools to acquire moreskills to help us to overcome challenges and to do better in manysituations… or to decide not to enter those situations at all.
My philosophies are these:
1) if I break my leg, I will seek the help of a Doctor who canperform surgery if needed, plaster cast or do anything else needed toget it to the best possible place of healing. I will then performexercises and rehabilitate said leg.
2) If I want to be an accountant, I will need to train infoundational math, take accountancy classes and then get experience inthe field. I will not just turn up one day with no tools to do the job.
If Annabelle is not doing well with her phonics at nursery and is notgrasping them as readily as her peers, I will not simply support her tosurvive without acquiring more phonics. I will actively teach her thephonics and add to her skill set in this area bit by bit. The same goesfor other areas of skill deficit, which may or may not have led to aspecific label or diagnosis. The diagnosis may be one of autism,language delay, depression or OCD. The method of intervention shouldstill be the same… to add skills each day to each skill set. I believethis should be done for strengths too. For example, if Zeph shows agifting for rugby then I will take him to rugby classes and then teampractices and events so as he can strengthen that gift.Our children and family members can overcome many challenges if we just change our mind-set from ‘support’ to ‘equipping’