Welcome to Holland

I wanted to share a beautiful poem that my best friend shared w/me. It was given to her by her doctor. She has 2 beautiful baby boys, but one was born w/disabilities due to hospital negligence. I thought I share this on motherhood, because one thing you learn as a parent, is that you can't really plan anything, it all just kind of happens. You're never really prepared for the first time they vomit, or have a temperature, or need stitches. Pregnancy, labor/delivery, and children, it's all a different experience pretty much every time. This is such a beautiful poem about realizing that a child is always a blessing. ( I cry every time I read it)


Emily Perl Kingsley.

c1987 by Emily Perl Kingsley. All rights reserved

I am often asked to describe the experience of raising a child with a disability - to try to help people who have not shared that unique experience to understand it, to imagine how it would feel. It's like this......

When you're going to have a baby, it's like planning a fabulous vacation trip - to Italy. You buy a bunch of guide books and make your wonderful plans. The Coliseum. The Michelangelo David. The gondolas in Venice. You may learn some handy phrases in Italian. It's all very exciting.

After months of eager anticipation, the day finally arrives. You pack your bags and off you go. Several hours later, the plane lands. The stewardess comes in and says, "Welcome to Holland."

"Holland?!?" you say. "What do you mean Holland?? I signed up for Italy! I'm supposed to be in Italy. All my life I've dreamed of going to Italy."

But there's been a change in the flight plan. They've landed in Holland and there you must stay.

The important thing is that they haven't taken you to a horrible, disgusting, filthy place, full of pestilence, famine and disease. It's just a different place.

So you must go out and buy new guide books. And you must learn a whole new language. And you will meet a whole new group of people you would never have met.

It's just a different place. It's slower-paced than Italy, less flashy than Italy. But after you've been there for a while and you catch your breath, you look around.... and you begin to notice that Holland has windmills....and Holland has tulips. Holland even has Rembrandt's.

But everyone you know is busy coming and going from Italy... and they're all bragging about what a wonderful time they had there. And for the rest of your life, you will say "Yes, that's where I was supposed to go. That's what I had planned."

And the pain of that will never, ever, ever, ever go away... because the loss of that dream is a very very significant loss.

But... if you spend your life mourning the fact that you didn't get to Italy, you may never be free to enjoy the very special, the very lovely things ... about Holland.

sweetk8ty76 sweetk8ty76 8 years 17 weeks
That is beautiful :)
mamafog mamafog 8 years 18 weeks
Thanks for sharing this, I'm going to pass it along also.
QueenMargot QueenMargot 8 years 18 weeks
Thanks for sharing this beautiful poem with us! :hug:
Shoe-Diva Shoe-Diva 8 years 18 weeks
This is beautiful, and brought tears to my eyes. Thanks so much for sharing! :hug:
mominator mominator 8 years 18 weeks
That was lovely! Thanks for shring that
kiwitwist kiwitwist 8 years 18 weeks
very very true!!! Thank you!
books-and-shoes books-and-shoes 8 years 18 weeks
It's beautiful! Thank you for sharing it with us. I'm going to share it with someone else.
CiaoBella2 CiaoBella2 8 years 18 weeks
What a beautiful poem. Life is really about those little moments, taking time to recognize them & being thankful for them. Thanks for sharing friend. :)
ohohmommio ohohmommio 8 years 18 weeks
What a beautiful, bitersweet perspective! :CRY: Thanks so much for sharing that. I'm going to pass it on to a friend also.
dalianne dalianne 8 years 18 weeks
That's life!
ALSW ALSW 8 years 18 weeks
Thanks* I mean!
suebree96 suebree96 8 years 18 weeks
Sandy, I always love to read this one. It is so awesome when you really look at it because it is true, for about every situation in life. Thank you for posting it again. I wanted to make a copy of this for Jennifer and Stephan.
ALSW ALSW 8 years 18 weeks
That's for sharing that!
ALSW ALSW 8 years 18 weeks
Oh, that's a wonderful way to put that! And romaniagrl is right - it's so life. I've always been one of those people who tries to plan her life. Of course, life always changes and I try my best to roll with the punches - and keep planning. But I'm happy with the place that I'm in now, planning or no, and hopefully that continues!
rgrl rgrl 8 years 18 weeks
SO true. I think our whole lives are kind of like this poem. Unexpected things can happen anytime and change the course of things.