Four years ago, I started writing this blog because of Patrick, Trudy’s big brother. Because seeing Trudy through his eyes meant that we saw the girl and not the disability. He helped us to understand what we needed to do to accept our little girl.
Today, he said something which summed this all up. It reminded me of why blogging about him and his journey was as important as documenting ours and hers.
Patrick really wanted to try Taekwondo and I’d booked a trial lesson for him. We were heading that way when he told me he was nervous. He said that he wasn’t like Trudy, that he couldn’t just go up to people he doesn’t know and talk to them.
In that instant, he recognised one of Trudy’s main strengths, the strength to go through life not giving a damn about what people think of you, the confidence to initiate a conversation (albeit in her own way) and the lack of judgement to talk to absolutely anyone.
We talk a lot about what Trudy can’t do because we are constantly assessing her support. We help her every day with whatever she needs. We have to put things in place with regard to her independence, her education, her health and her well-being to make sure that she lives a full and happy life.
But this little gem of observation, this wee reminder that Trudy has something that WE might need flipped everything on its head. What if we learned from people like Trudy? What if they were here to teach us something, about ourselves, about each other and about the world we want to live in?
When my husband and I went to see a band together, everyone was seated and there was nowhere to dance. It was such a shame as the music was so good! I remember thinking ‘what would Trudy do?’ and we got up and danced like noone was watching in the space next to the fire exit!
So, maybe next time, when you’re doubting whether you should talk to that person, dance to that song or start that new club, think ‘what would Trudy do’!