Friday, August 10, 2012

The Disabled Child

The Disabled Child

At the playground, Jamie whispered to his best friend Sam, “Let’s get the wagon.”
Sam got the wagon. “OK, Jamie, get in.”
Jamie grinned. “OK. Help me with the brace.”
Sam unlocked the brace on Jamie’s leg and helped him into the wagon. Sam pulled Jamie, and both boys made engine noises.
In the sandbox on the same playground, Carol shoveled sand into a pail. She used her “good” hand and hid the other in her sleeve. When Carol was very young, she lost a finger in the car door. Neither she nor her parents could adjust to the loss. Now, she never lets others see that hand. And she rarely plays with other children.

How do you separate being “normal” from having special needs?
It’s hard. Often there is no clear dividing line between the two. Carol and Jamie, like most disabled
children, are “normal” in many ways. They like wagons and sand. They cry when they fall. They feel happy when someone hugs them. They are more like other children than different from them. Like other disabled children, however, they have some physical, emotional, or mental problem that will affect the course of their lives.

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