I wonder what it must feel like to have a typical child and see mine in the throes of a meltdown. To think if only those parents knew how to say no, and be certain I had done everything right. To never have to wonder if maybe she ingested food dye without us knowing. Or if she is experiencing something really emotionally significant. Or if this is residual effects of the drugs she had to fight out of her system when she first entered the world. Or if maybe she’s just 7 and having a bad day. There must be great comfort in applying blanket rules and policies to all children without stopping to consider whether that’s fair or effective or even safe.
I have often wondered what it would be like to have a child who is typical. One who doesn’t experience emotions with such self-awareness and express them with such eloquence that she makes me question things I had never considered. A little girl who isn’t so deeply empathetic. A child who hasn’t drawn people to her with a mysterious charisma her entire life. A child who isn’t so passionate about life, and already in love with the theatre. A child who doesn’t have a way of knowing when people and even animals need help; often even knowing exactly how to help. I wonder how it would be to raise someone who doesn’t make friends everywhere she goes. Someone who doesn’t make an impression at every restaurant, every store, every party — not because of her behavioral struggles, but because of her heart.
I have often wondered what it must be like to have a “typical” child. And how much love and magic I would have missed.