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1 Jun 2009
What They CAN Do
Last month I talked about my boys, ages 14 and 12, and the incredible pain they have been experiencing. They are still walking with a lot of pain. But so far, their spirits are up. I thought because my Corner sounded so depressing last month, I wanted to comment on the things the boys are able to do.
Here is a list of some activities either Nate or Sam (or both) have recently participated in or will participate in soon:
Camping, fishing, chess club, academic games, debate, band (trumpet), piano lessons, boy scouts, household chores, reading, computer programming, cybercorp, robotics, service projects, sewing, shooting clay pigeons, visiting older, single people, swimming, youth conferences, river rafting, science fairs, musicals, youth leadership meetings, and of course, lots and lots of biking!
I recognize my boys have many opportunities, but you’ll notice many of them are things that are offered free through schooling and the community. It’s just a matter of taking advantage of what is available and what fits their interests.
When Sam was born with PC, my dad, who is an avid fisherman, said he wanted to teach Sam how to fish since you didn’t need good feet to fish. That was the first of many things my kids have been able to do. They are not alone in that there are many kids – and adults - with PC who do a huge variety of things.
Sam’s passion is computer programming. He checks programming books out of the library and practices writing code. He hopes to work in the field of computers someday. For as long as I can remember, Sam has expected to go to college and have a career that doesn’t involve standing or walking. I never told him he needed to find that type of career – he just thinks ahead and knows his feet hurt.
Nate’s interests are different from Sam. Right now he is interested in being an engineer or a lawyer. He, too, knows that he’ll need a career that doesn’t involve a lot of walking. He knows that he can still do something productive even though he has PC. When his feet were extra sore last month, Nate didn’t want to go to piano lessons. He said, “My feet are sore – I can’t go to piano.” And I said with a smile, “Then don’t play the piano with your feet.” He laughed and went to piano lessons.
Because regardless of painful feet, my boys need to know that they must go to school, and they should participate in things that interest them. Most of all, they can use their minds, hearts, personalities and integrity to progress in life – if not their feet. The good news is there are many PCers in this world who are excellent examples of people that have taken advantage of good opportunities and worked hard, in spite of pain, to make their lives meaningful.
So I write this all today to say that yes, life is very difficult with pain – and my boys are certainly learning that – but lest you think it’s an excuse to do nothing with our lives, it is not. We are all trying to be our best. And there are many, many things we can do, as children, and as adults. Thanks to those of you with PC who have inspired me and my boys with the way you live your lives.