Now I live in the world of special needs kids and professionals in the field make it their benchmark. They throw the word around expecting smiles and nods, maybe cheers. Let's make these kids not stand apart, not stand out, not stand alone. When my oldest was in third grade, the occupational therapist told me I had to fix the way he held his pencil. This was truly dire. She'd pulled me aside in the hallway and told me his entire future would be affected by his finger grip. He'll look odd. He won't write fast. Kids will make fun of him. He won't fit in. That was the last time I spoke to her.
Normal. I hate the word, but if my son could wish for things like that, if he could pinpoint exactly why he felt so out of place, would that be his wish? I should ask him what he wishes for and see what he has to say. Until then, I'll keep guard of his spirit and try my best not to tamp it down.