[before you start – if you are on a computer, considering clicking the “enter reading mode” on the top right corner – it will take the sidebar away and the photos will be full-sized]
Humboldt County, California is known for being green and wet. Very wet. It’s why my grandparents left so many years ago, “we were just tired of the rain,” they sighed when asked.
Global warming has changed all that, and the last few winters have been pretty dry.
This year, though, the year we decided to stay through the winter, is the one everyone is nodding their heads vigorously over. “It’s a real Humboldt winter!” people have said with some satisfaction.
“A real Humboldt Winter” can mean 17 inches of rain in a month.
Wanna see our house? Here it is:
Cute lil’ yurt on a hill
Glad it’s not an actual tent-yurt though, because those get blown away up here, real easy, real fast. Our neighbor’s yurt was blown off his hill last year – he’s going for something more sturdy this year.
We’re happy ours is made of copper and concrete with some pretty strong base work. It stays tight with the heavy wind and rain.
I suppose in every parent of a child who has a disability that is unusual or new to the parent, there is a rather lot of reflection or sharing of learnings along the way. The “wow!” factor is big.
I feel that way so often with Moxie. She is the explorer in our family, the fearless child who longs for new adventures and who can get her brothers to do more. It’s certainly not me – I’m the type who likes to sit around a warm fire with a book and a cup of tea, NOT go charging through creeks in the rain. Moxie pushes us to do all that stuff. I know we’re happier because we follow her lead – adventures are a blast, once you get started! I know we have more fun because of her.
But did I see that coming when the perinatologist was telling me that we should abort her because she would be a “burden for life” for us, for Micah? Oh, hell no.
And it pisses me off that he can say that kind of crap and get away with it. And it pisses me off that even if I went back now and told him how wrong he is and how FUN she is and how she leads her brothers on adventures – he’d find a way to say that it’s just her. That not ALL people with Down syndrome have something to offer, or are as fun-filled as our Moxie is. That’s the part that really pisses me off – because I know now that he’s absolutely and completely wrong. Every human being has something to offer and it’s our job as parents to relax and provide environments and encouragement that let that beauty emerge and unfurl.
I’m so proud that she’s gone so far beyond what I ever could – that’s she so fearless and curious where I was always more of a wuss. I’m so proud that my own daughter leaps where I mince. I’m proud that she loves the ride and doesn’t mind getting wet and cold.
I love this winter. It’s a lot of rain, sure. But with that, come beautifully intense clouds. Raindrops that sparkle like jewels. Green, so much green. Rivers that surge, water all around, and even more green. Mists and wind.