August 30, 2009

We went to Holland

In our initial research after Alex's birth we found lots of very useful information and some not so useful. We did find this short story - and it really does sum up the new detour we had taken in our life's road. We credit it to Emily Perly Kingsley.

"Welcome to Holland."

"Holland?!" you say. "Holland? I signed up for Italy. All my life I've dreamed of going to Italy!

"I'm sorry," she says. "There's been a change and we've landed in Holland."

But I don't know anything about Holland! I never thought of going to Holland! "I have no idea what you do in Holland!"

What's important is that they haven't taken you to a terrible, ugly place, full of famine, pestilence and disease. It's just a different place.

So you have to go out and buy a whole new set of guide books . . . you have to learn a whole new language . . . and you'll meet a whole new bunch of people you would never have met otherwise.

Holland. It's slower paced than Italy, less flashy than Italy . . .

But after you've been there for a while, and you've had a chance to catch your breath, you look around and begin to discover that Holland has windmills and Holland has tulips - Holland even has Rembrandts.

But everyone you know is busy coming and going from Italy . . . and they're all bragging about what a great 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 planned." And the pain of that will never, ever, ever, ever go away. And you must accept that pain - because the loss of that dream is a very, very significant loss.

But . . . if you spend your time mourning the fact that you never got to go to Italy, you may never be available to enjoy the very lovely, very special things about Holland.
"Welcome to Holland!"

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