Tuesday, November 11, 2008


So, here's something I've noticed and it's a big fear of mine. I fear that Dermot's becoming invisible. Not really, but to the outside world, to the "nice" people we meet or already know. To friends and even some family members, it seems as though he's not there. The polite look and then quick look away, the attention that gets showered to Owen and Ryan is not the same for Dermot.

Why is that, I wonder. I don't really wonder. I've been there myself. I was the one who shyed away from anyone different. Not on purpose, just out of fear. Not knowing how to treat a child or what to say, do I touch him? Can they hear me? Can they see me? I'll just pretend they're invisible.

We've gone to several outings, the country club, Target, the Children's Museum and so on. I've started to notice.

So, I want to tell you about Dermot.

Dermot is a beautiful boy. He smiles, he laughs, he screams with delight. He has more grunts and moans than most babies have, and I can understand most of them. He shakes his head no when he's all done with something, he calls out for attention when he wants to play, and he whines when he's sleepy or sick. Dermot thrives off of human interaction. He loves being talked to. We're not sure what he can see because of his vision impairment, but the moment you come down to his level and say hello, he knows you're there. He doesn't have sensory issues, so grab his hand when you say hello. He loves when our house is at it's most chaotic. He loves listening to the dogs wrestling and barking, he giggles when Ryan is crying close by and loves when big brother Owen screeches and howls for him.

He's not mobile, he can't sit up on his own or crawl. He hangs out in "big Blue" a Tumble Form chair or on the floor or in his stander (3 x's a day). Or the "stroller" when we're out and about. He can't walk up to you and get your attention, he needs you to come to him, he needs you to say hello. I need you to say hello. He's my son and I love him with all that I am, he's your grandson, your cousin, your nephew, he's not invisible.


kelly said...

Sue, that was so well written and helped me to read it. What a beatiful picture of Dermot.

Anonymous said...

Sue--I want to snuggle up your sweetie pie Dermot! You share so honestly, with great insight and heartfelt joy and pain. To this day, with my brother Mike, I am amazed at the stares we get when we are out and about. He does not have eyeballs so often it throws people off. But for those who are willing to reach out and say hi they are rewarded with the most enthusiastic grin and Mike's "oh hi there"! Dermot's spirit shines through in your words and for all who get to meet and know him. Kim

Blake Kelly said...

you made me cry.

Erin Hamel said...

What a GORGEOUS picture of Dermot! :) He looks so old! I miss him dearly!

Anonymous said...

I remember the first time my daughter (1 year old) was called 'special' by a stranger while we were out shopping (in response to a little girl who was calling my daughter funny-looking). It broke my heart. Not because it was the wrong response, but because it was the first time it sunk in that people will always see her as different. It caught me off-guard and reminded me that her life will not be what I originally envisioned. Reading your blog made me feel less alone regarding the conflicting thoughts and emotions that I have about her condition. Thank you for your honesty and for sharing your beautiful boys.