“The simplest questions are the hardest to answer~
“Mummy do you wish I could walk like other children?” -Brady
“Mummy what age will Brady be when he can walk?” -Riley
These are the 2 questions that come to mind when people ask me what is the hardest thing about accepting Brady’s disability. I don’t know why these two questions trump the endless hospital appointments, medical procedures, hospital stays, medical operations, physiotherapy appointments, OT appointments and any other appointment where someone feels the need to review Brady.
Brady asked me this question was he was only four and half and we were sitting in a play park in Kildare Shopping Village in Dublin watching his daddy and Riley play. As he sat on my knee he turned round to look at me with his big blue eyes and asked the question ‘Mummy do you wish I could walk like other children? How do you answer that question? How do I put into words what the reality will be for Brady? How do break his heart and tell him that will never happen? These and many other questions raced through my head as my heart thumped, the sinking feeling in my stomach deepened and my brain attempted to barricade the tears welling in my eyes. With a deep breath and pushing those feelings deep down I looked at his little face and decide to be honest by replying ‘So do I sweetie, so do I’ to which he threw his arms round me. I think for me this moment was when I knew this child of mine was strong enough to deal with whatever life threw at him because no matter what he would always have me, his daddy and Riley at his side.
The littlest Chambers was 7 years old when I had to break the news to him that Brady would never be able to walk and run like him. The question came completely out of the blue one Saturday morning as I was cleaning his bedroom as he chatted away to me talking about his school friend and activities he did with his brother then bam came the question ‘Mummy what age will Brady be when he can walk?’. As those innocent blue eyes looked up at me I knew what I had to say but would I be able too? Would I be able to crush his dreams of playing football with his big brother? The realisation hit me that although Riley has grown up with Brady and his disability he did not really understand what it was or how it would affect him long term. I sat him down on the carpet and explained that Brady would never be able to walk like him but there were still lots of things they would be able to do together. I waited holding my breath for his response which after a minute was ‘Ok I’m going to see if Brady wants to play Lego now’. After he left the room I remained on the floor pondering over what had just happened where was the onslaught of questions? Where was the demand for answers? Where was the anger? Then it hit me Riley wasn’t angry or sad he just asked a question and accepted the answer given to him. He didn’t change how he felt or looked at Brady he was still just Brady to him.
I think these words are so very true-
“While we try to teach our children all about life.
Our children teach us what life is all about.”
It is amazing to think how those questions have haunted me but to Brady and Riley they have never given a second thought. To them the questions were asked, answered and then forgotten as everyday life continued but to me they made me wish for the answers to have been different or in fact for the questions never to have to be asked in the first instance. Our children sometime truly do teach us a simpler pathway through life, a path where you ask questions, accept the answer given and move onto to the next day.
For now its time to chase 2 boys into bed and begin the prep of school bags, sports bags and lunches for tomorrow…… you know the drill!
Until next time, L