Wednesday, July 28, 2010

O Come, All Ye Old Faithful....Friends

    Whew. Whoa. Wow. And Whew again.  Taylor and I just got back from a week in Yellowstone.  Traveling with Taylor is always eye-opening and without fail it calls up in me a whole bunch of my own fears and insecurities. I am so aware of what I have convinced myself is true about life---mine and yours and the universe's.  (Don't you just love it how I just launch right in to real junk?  Well, again, maybe you don't.)  OK, this is brutally honest, but I realize how isolated I keep myself even though I have a gregarious exterior.  This is way too much information and as my ex-husband/friend/it's complicated father-of-my children....says, "Save something for your diary."  The wonderful thing about traveling is that it gives one (us/you/me) time to reflect on who we are and what we want our lives to be about. The bad thing about traveling is that it gives us time to reflect on.......yep.  All of the above.  Reflection. Inquiry.  Worry.  Doubt.  And more what and why and how come questions. 
So, we watched geysers and then found some more geysers to see  and then checked the schedule to see when the oldest and most faithful of the geysers would go off.  Taylor was not impressed.  If he could talk, he might have said, "We came here for this?"  And I watched the throngs of people.  I am always so keenly aware of other handicapped people because I like to see them with their families.  I was  so lucky to be with my sister, a hoard of her friends and with my older son.  As we rode horses and walked the boardwalks, I  guess I was trying to decide if I was  on track or out-of-bounds or on course in my dealings and relationship with my 26 year old Down Syndrome son.  I'm not quite sure from whom I might get my cues when we're out and about in a public and new place.   Can't you see that all of this is just inside of me and not inside of Taylor? He doesn't see the stares and perhaps the looks of sympathy.  As I have to always take Taylor into the "girl's" bathroom with me,  the discomfort of others is palpable.    I can sense it but it makes me up my game and go into "mother of the year" mode.  Help me out here.  Is that sad or necessary or weird or what?
Anyway, what I came away with from this trip is that I want to connect and need to connect with people---with friends---with those around me.  I'm not exactly sure why that's so hard. Well, actually I am but you would need to come sit on my sofa with me for a couple of hours for me to share this part with you.
For those fellow travelers who reached out, made eye contact, initiated conversation, took an interest, allowed us more time and space, I felt so grateful---and connected.  So many kind people opened themselves up to me----to Taylor.
And I was reminded that when I do that---when I open myself up to you----when you open yourself up to others---there is such abundance....of love.
Cheezy. But true. 
I bet you already knew that.
See, I really am the retarded mother. 
I am slow to catch on to these things.