As I look at my beautiful, perfect little human smiling happily while listening to the birds, enjoying how the grass feels on his bare feet, it is very clear that he is thoroughly enjoying life.
Yes, he has severe visual impairment, is tube fed and has a life-limiting level of epilepsy; but he also finds the same joys in life that I do. He makes the best of every moment.
It doesn’t happen so often these days, but when he was younger it wasn’t uncommon that we’d be out and about, and there would be sympathetic glances, comments of ‘it’s a shame isn’t it’, or ‘poor little lad’. Trust me, there has been more than enough grief in this household at how unfair life has been to my boy.
You know what though? He really doesn’t let his disabilities get in the way of him enjoying every single moment of this life. He is who he is, and his happiness and love of life brightens the lives of everyone who knows him.
My son has forced me to examine my own attitude to life and to what matters.
I’ve learnt from him that it doesn’t matter if I don’t finish something at the first attempt. Doing as much as I can in one go is enough, as long as I go back and finish it once I can. Its perfectly acceptable to have an off day, sometimes resting is the best thing to do, but that does not mean you can’t still be happy.
If you spend any length of time with my boy you WILL witness seizures, they are a fact of life. You will also see how once its over and he’s had a little time to recover, he’ll go straight back to being his usual happy, sunny natured little self.
Sam’s disabilities don’t detract from his enjoyment of life; and if anything they allow allow us to focus on the smaller, simpler things. Like listening to the birds, seeing seeds that we planted weeks ago grow and bloom into glorious flowers, or just going for a walk together.
Happiness doesn’t cost money, and it doesn’t need a huge gesture or experience to find – its always there, we just need to follow our beautiful children’s lead and recognise it in everything.