That seems to be the question of the month. Well-meaning individuals looking soulfully into my eyes as if there are really no options for me. As if writing can only go so far. Inside I laugh, because this isn’t the first time that question has been asked.
When Bailey was born, we were asked that question constantly. Like a robot, I would smile and say the same thing to each person, “It is going to be okay,” as if they needed more consoling that I did. People would cry and I would console them. People would ask inane questions and I would console them. Maybe that was God’s idea of a distraction from the reality of, at the time, not knowing what we were going to do. My response was just as much for them as it was for me. I had no idea if it was going to be okay. But it was more than okay. It was the best opportunity for me to learn, grow, and most of all, step outside of society’s dictated box, and to explore other options than those slated for individuals with Down syndrome.
My current situation is nothing compared to that, so when individuals ask “what are you going to do”, I smile and dole out the list of opportunities that have already been offered. Smile and know that I have made it through worse scenarios. Smile and assure them I will be more than okay. Because that is the truth. After almost two weeks of losing one identity, I am gaining something even more affirming…….I am marketable. It is kind of cool that people are coming to me. That I have choices. That starting over is scary and exciting all at the same time. So, here is the answer to the question……I am going to exhale, smile, and move forward because it only gets better from here.