“Diversity is being asked to the party. Inclusion is being asked to dance.” – Verna Myers
When Allison and Morgan were babies, I spent a grand amount of time doing everything a mom does for her children. I suspected the natural progression would be less in my hands, and more in theirs, as time passed.
As Allison grew, and became able to do things on her own, I’d step back and happily step in, whenever needed. Being my first, it was much easier to hang on, than to let go. School came. Friendships came. Invites and outings came. Opinions, independence, and marriage came. There are still times when she needs to talk to mom, to share about her day; the good, the bad, and the ugly. And of course, I Love that. 🙂 She’ll ask for advice, weigh what I say, and then make her own decisions. I’ve never had to be concerned about her finding her place in the world. She knows how to reach out, and reach back. She knows how to ask for what she needs.
Morgan is on the autism spectrum. Her walk has been anything but a natural progression. I’m still stepping back, stepping in, side stepping,… whatever it takes to help her be a part of things. She has come a long way. Like her sister, she has definite opinions. 😉 But in life’s dance, she still needs a partner. She needs someone to Ask her to dance and support her steps. As easy as it is to do things FOR her, there is so much more value in doing things WITH her. It takes more time. It takes more patience. When she nails the steps, the dance is beautiful, and uniquely her own. The girl has MOVES. 🙂
I’m so grateful for the things I’ve learned from doing the mom dance with both of my daughters. “INCLUSION is Being Asked to Dance.” The past few years, I’ve had the privilege of working WITH The Weekley Hall Singers. They are a group of adults with disabilities who enjoy encouraging others with their music. They were ready to be Included. They were ready to be Involved. All I had to do was Ask.
The Weekley Hall Singers are Engaged. They are Enthusiastic. They give it all they’ve got. They make My heart dance.
Until Next Time,
Know The Hope!