a blog about raising a daughter with cerebral palsy and learning unexpected lessons along the way

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

My Holland

There probably isn't a special needs mommy out there who hasn't read at one time or another Welcome to Holland by Emily Perl Kingsley. I had taken a couple of days off of work immediately following Oia's diagnosis and a co-worker of mine had given me a printed copy of this upon my return. Of all the cards, flowers, small gifts of thoughtfulness, and even some handwritten letters that I received in the days following, this was the one thing that seemed to fit and make sense. I remember reading these words shortly after they were handed to me and I recall thinking to myself, "This is exactly how I feel." The words brought a bit of hope and comfort during a painful time of uncertainty.

So being the lover of flowers and symbolism that I am, I planted my own slice of Holland...right in my own back yard. Rob and I built a flower bed together last fall and in it I planted nearly 100 tulips bulbs. Oia and I have spent our spring days walking to the flower bed together to watch the bulbs sprout and grow and bloom into tulips; slender and beautiful just like her. I've learned to make the most out of unexpected turns because Holland, at least my slice of Holland, is not such a bad place to be after all.


  1. I loved this post. I agree ...the words of that poem make light of the complex life we live & the choice we have to really enjoy it!

    So glad you are enjoying yours!

  2. Love the post, love the flowers too. We'll all be happier when we are happy with Holland. I've always been a glass half full person and I want to love Holland, but the train there - ouch! I love that you made a physical project with enduring results, I'd like to do that too.

  3. Oooh, I want to plant my own slice of Holland now! Love it. Honestly, I hated Welcome to Holland at first. A nurse gave it to me while Elijah was still in the hospital after his birth and I wasn't ready for it. I couldn't yet relate. It was too early in our journey. Now, though, is a different story.

    Thanks for visiting my blog. Oia is so adorable! I'm adding you to my blog roll. :)

  4. Love this and as a person with a disability it has helped me too enjoy the journey and different destination than I thought. I was so happy to see your quote, too at the top of your page. I had heard that a while back and couldn't remember it all -- thank you. Your blog is beautiful.