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Welcome to Holland

Discussion in 'Parents of Children with Type 1' started by M&MMOM, Aug 15, 2008.

  1. M&MMOM

    M&MMOM Approved members

    Jan 3, 2008
    I saw this posted in a doctors office today and thought some of you could relate. I hope you enjoy!



    Emily Perl Kingsley.

    I am often asked to describe the experience of raising a child with a chronic medical condition or disability - to try to help people who have not shared that unique experience to understand it, to imagine how it would feel. It's like this......

    When you're going to have a baby, it's like planning a fabulous vacation trip - to Italy. You buy a bunch of guide books and make your wonderful plans. The Coliseum. The Michelangelo David. The gondolas in Venice. You may learn some handy phrases in Italian. It's all very exciting.

    After months of eager anticipation, the day finally arrives. You pack your bags and off you go. Several hours later, the plane lands. The stewardess comes in and says, "Welcome to Holland."

    "Holland?!?" you say. "What do you mean Holland?? I signed up for Italy! I'm supposed to be in Italy. All my life I've dreamed of going to Italy."

    But there's been a change in the flight plan. They've landed in Holland and there you must stay.

    The important thing is that they haven't taken you to a horrible, disgusting, filthy place, full of pestilence, famine and disease. It's just a different place.

    So you must go out and buy new guide books. And you must learn a whole new language. And you will meet a whole new group of people you would never have met.

    It's just a different place. It's slower-paced than Italy, less flashy than Italy. But after you've been there for a while and you catch your breath, you look around.... and you begin to notice that Holland has windmills....and Holland has tulips. Holland even has Rembrandts.

    But everyone you know is busy coming and going from Italy... and they're all bragging about what a wonderful time they had there. And for the rest of your life, you will say "Yes, that's where I was supposed to go. That's what I had planned."

    And the pain of that will never, ever, ever, ever go away... because the loss of that dream is a very very significant loss.

    But... if you spend your life mourning the fact that you didn't get to Italy, you may never be free to enjoy the very special, the very lovely things ... about Holland.
  2. Tripletmommy

    Tripletmommy Approved members

    Mar 25, 2008
    What a great perspective! I love this! Thanks for sharing :)
  3. goochgirl

    goochgirl Approved members

    Jul 28, 2008
    That is actually one of the first things I thought of after diagnosis. It's always been one of my favorite poems. Thanks for posting it!
  4. tiffanie1717

    tiffanie1717 Approved members

    May 16, 2008
    Wow. Very touching! TFS!
  5. Zanesmommy

    Zanesmommy Approved members

    Jul 14, 2008
    Thanks for sharing this! I really needed to hear something like this today!
  6. Denise in CT

    Denise in CT Approved members

    Mar 22, 2008
    I do love that...but what is different about most of us is that we HAVE been to Italy (for 15 years here) and now we're in Holland. We are living in Holland, and adjusting to Holland, but at times we still miss Italy.

    It's hard here because the only time I have seen my daughter cry over diabetes is when she told me that she doesn't hate diabetes, but she misses her 'old life' sometimes.
  7. Mama2H

    Mama2H Approved members

    Oct 19, 2006
    OMG Denise! You so hit the nail on the head! I think that is one of the most painful things for Hailey and I. Your post truly made me cry. I had read this before and it tugged at my heart but your post is what made me break down. You are right, we have been to Italy. We lived in Italy for 10 years and then one day someone packed our bags for us, blind folded us, threw us in a plane and we landed in Holland with no passport back to Italy. We had to learn a new language, new cuisine, and new friends and it was really really hard. We have gotten used to Holland now, we hate it but are making the best of it. We miss Italy every day though :(
  8. buggle

    buggle Approved members

    Mar 24, 2008
    I just hope that someone finds a way to let us all go back... :(
  9. OSUMom

    OSUMom Approved members

    Sep 10, 2006
    As a parent, I've always liked this poem. As I read it again, I might suspect though that if my son were to read it he would say the dreams he had in Italy are the same - that with diabetes he really never left Italy - that he's just maneuvering around it alittle differently.

    No doubt as I interpret it, my friends at CWD are the beautiful tulips all over Holland!! :cwds::cwds:
  10. shekov

    shekov Approved members

    Feb 22, 2008
    Thanks for posting this...I love the perspective.
  11. dragonfly

    dragonfly Approved members

    Jun 28, 2008
    OK,that just made me cry.
  12. MyAngelEmma

    MyAngelEmma Approved members

    May 23, 2008
    Thank you for this adding this perspective! I love what you said and only hope Emma has the attitude of your son as she gets older. That really is our goal.

    I have to admit though, I have really been missing Italy myslef lately! :(
  13. Denise in CT

    Denise in CT Approved members

    Mar 22, 2008
    Tulips are my favorite flower too...

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