Thursday, February 1, 2007

Apples and Oranges?

Ashley's Treatment ... Finding Room to Grow Carrots under the Apple Orchard.
Ashley's Treatment; Growing Carrots under the Apple Orchard I've been reading about Ashley and her parents with great interest. Like Ashley's parents, I've been discussing with several pediatricians about finding a way to help Elisabeth bypass her some of her gender-related biological functions and finding a drug that will slow her growth. The good news is that Ashley's parents have broken through the barrier for their daughter, ad hominems and all. The bad news is why they had to resort to doing this for her.

It scares me when children like her continue to be most of the time invisible to people except when their disability becomes the focus. And most times, what people see is what we don't want them to see -- on object of pity or object to protect. Everyone wants to own her but no one wants to own the reason why her parents resorted to surgery so she could fit in. Instead of people looking at her emerging ability, the focus became what she can't do which is often times used as the basis for planning her future. People did not value her as an individual who has very different needs. She is present but she is was not included.

When we advocate for our kids, it's not based on what they can't do. Do we tell kids they can't play baseball because at 4 they can't hit a ball with a bat? No, we invent something called a T-ball to help them grow an ability. So why can't we do this for children who have global delays?

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