|Functional Behavioral Assessment
& Behavior Intervention Plan
|Emotional and Behavioral
|Indiana Governor's Council
for People with Disabilities
|Consortium for Citizens
Special Ed Advocate
|Individuals with Disabilities
Education Improvement Act
|American Assn on Intellectual
& Developmental Disabilities
|National Association of
Developmental Disabilities Councils
|Learning Disabilities Association
|National Center for
|Disability Rights Education
and Defense Fund
|Children & Adults with Attention
|TBI Rehabilitation and
Transition to Adulthood
|Job Accommodation Network
|Office of Disability Employment Policy
Resources on the Internet
|European Agency for Special Needs and
|Disability Rights Advocates
|A Roundtable Discussion
with Facilitator Lauri Swann Hunt & Guests
Tom Mihail Paula Kluth Torrie Dunlap
Lisa Jo Rudy Frances Stetson
Kathleen McClaskey Mary Ulrich
|INFORMATION, RESOURCES, DISABILITY RIGHTS, LEGISLATION, SPECIAL EDUCATION, SUPPORTED
INCLUSIVE EDUCATION, ADVOCACY ORGANIZATIONS, EMPLOYMENT, INDEPENDENT LIVING, NEWS,
FAMILY SUPPORT, NORMALIZATION, ACCESSIBILITY, DISABILITY NEWS, SUPPORT SERVICES
|National Council on Disability
|International Paralympic Committee
|Autism Research Institute
|Autism Society of America
Advocacy Training Center
|Office of Special Education
and Rehabilitative Services
|Emily Perl Kingsley (1987)
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
When you're going to have a baby, it's like planning a fabulous vacation trip - to Italy. You buy a
bunch of guidebooks 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 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 guidebooks. 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 you catch your breath, you look around, and you begin to notice that Holland has
windmills, 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
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 go away, because the loss of that dream is a very significant
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.