Our Journey Raising Two Children with Special Needs

This blog chronicles our life raising two children, Nicholas 15, diagnosed with Prader-Willi Syndrome and Weston 18, diagnosed with Autism/Asperger's/ADHD. It's the ups, the downs, the joys, the sorrows and most importantly, the beauty of living a life less perfect, a life more meaningful.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

The Tortoise and the Hare

The Hare
The Tortoise
My two sons could not be any more different.

Weston, born with rocket fuel in his veins instead of blood, likes to run, jump, slide, scream and smash into anything that is not nailed down.

Nicholas, on the other hand, has blood that flows like molasses. He is sweet and slow-moving. He likes to cuddle, sing, dance and play on the couch.

So, it is not surprising that our days are filled with arguments and disagreement.

"Weston, stop bothering me," Nicholas screams as Weston ricochets off the couch and knocks over Nick's talking computer named WALLE.

"I've got WALLE, I've got WALLE...." Weston taunts.

"Weston, STOP, Mummmmmmmyyyyyyy!!!!!!!"

And that is pretty much what life is like in our household.

But amidst the arguments and screaming there are precious moments when the two polar opposites come together and do something that is truly beautiful. Today was one of those days.

Weston decided that it was time for Nicholas to learn how to play basketball. And although on most days Weston aggravates the wits out of his brother, he is still without a doubt, Nicholas's #1 hero.

In fact, I had to laugh last week when Nicholas's aide, Mrs. D explained to me that Nicholas had an outburst in class and proceeded to call her "a moron"!  A Weston-ism if I ever heard one!

Anyway, back to basketball. As unfocused and highly active as Weston is, he is also kind, compassionate and patient when it comes to helping his brother to navigate his way in this world.

"Here Nick, you take the ball and line it up with the basket." Weston instructs.

Stand here!

Line it up with the basket!
Get set!
Now I 'd like to say that Nicholas jumped up and slam dunked the ball.....swish...........!!!!

It was not to be. Today, he missed.

Weston, patient as I have ever seen him, handed the ball back to Nicholas and said:

"Try again Nick, you can do it!"

As I watch my boys playing basketball, I am reminded of the fable, The Tortoise and the Hare. Now maybe in the REAL story, the rabbit falls asleep and the tortoise cruises to the finish. But today, in OUR story, the speedy rabbit, full of compassion for his only brother, slows down and stops so the the slow-paced turtle can finally feel good about himself and win.

It is a perfect day as somehow together, these completely opposite forces combine to form perfect balance.

p.s. Take a look at the last photo. On the lower right hand side of the picture is Muffy, the sneak, eating my plants! At least this time, it's not my cornbread. (See my post below titled: Like Children, Like Dog)