Wednesday, August 3, 2011

3,200 mile drive: kearney to chicago

tuesday morning we ventured down to the hotel's complimentary breakfast where leah made a mess of herself and her surroundings as per her breakfast ritual. she also wasn't very quiet despite our pleas to the contrary. luckily, a kind elderly woman ventured over to our table to tell us how lovely leah was and how she reminded her of her own special needs grandchild. in a nutshell she told us leah had brightened her day and told ryan and i we were doing a great job. so at least we had smiles on our faces as we picked up all the eggs and hashbrowns from the floor around our table. 

our goal was to get to chicago that night and then, in the morning, meet up with a new rett family i had become acquainted with via technology. c and j live about 20 minutes outside of chicago with their two daughters, a (5 years old) and e (nearly 3, just diagnosed with rett syndrome). as the day progressed, they ended up inviting us to stay at their home instead. even though they actually were strangers to us, we felt as if we knew them. we arrived after their two sweet daughters were already sleeping and we quickly put leah to bed. and then, as the rain poured and it thundered outside, we stayed up for over an hour talking about our lives. it's always nice to feel as if you're not alone - to know that when you don't have the words to describe a feeling, it doesn't even matter because the others already know. they know because they're there too. because they've felt the exact same emptiness and despair you felt. the same frustrations you currently feel. and then, together, you can feel hope. that's exactly what happened for me that night. and, although i would never wish it upon anyone, i'm so glad c and j joined our club.
two days down. four to go.

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