An NLD Fairy Tale
Once upon a time, there
lived a sweet princess, who had long, blond hair, big green eyes, and a big,
genuine smile. The princess was kind to everyone, even those who were
mean to her (and there were plenty of those people). As a baby, the
princess had been born to a woman who was too sick to take care of her, so one
day, a beautiful fairy godmother saw an ad in the New York Times for a sweet
little baby who needed a home. The fairy godmother went immediately to
the foster care agency to see the baby, as she wanted to be the first in line.
Sure enough, the fairy godmother brought the baby home, and that night, there
was a joyous block party. Everyone in the neighborhood came to see the
new baby. The baby had three new older brothers, and a fairy godmother
who loved her more than anyone who had ever loved a baby.
The fairy godmother not
only fed and held and loved the baby, but was caring and observant enough to
notice that the baby was having some problems. The baby was not holding
her head up at the expected age, and although she talked quite often and
early, she had difficulty learning to walk, as well. The fairy godmother
read books to help the baby, and encouraged the baby's singing talent.
One day, some wicked women from the foster care agency tried to take the baby
away from the fairy godmother, because the baby's birth mother wanted her
back. However, one nice social worker at the agency said, "If you
take this baby away from this women, she will be traumatized for life."
So, that is when the fairy godmother found out that the baby was hers forever.
Sadly, that same day, the fairy godmother's youngest son, the sweetest one and
the closest to the baby, died from complications of heart surgery. He
was only 7 years old, and he was born with a bad heart. The baby cried
and cried, not understanding why her beloved brother was not coming home.
The fairy godmother maintained her sweet patience and loving manner through
her own pain, and assured the baby that her brother was up in Heaven and
taking care of everyone. Despite the fairy godmother's patience,
however, the baby continued to have trouble sleeping and eating, and she did
not grow or gain weight for nearly two years as a result of the trauma of
losing her brother.
When the baby was three
years old, the fairy godmother married a very nice man who took care of them
all. He had a daughter of his own, and everyone became a close family
who went camping and on trips together, and shared lots of great times. In
1975, when the little girl was five years old, the fairy godmother and her new
husband got to adopt the little girl. This was the happiest day of their
lives. The baby started getting picked on in first grade, when the other kids
began noticing that she was "different" from them. Although
she talked a blue streak, had the vocabulary of an adult, and could
appear sweet and charming to adults, the other kids despised her lack of
coordination and poor social skills. She was tripped in the hallway,
laughed at, and had very few friends, in any. However, the baby (now a
little girl) so loved coming home every day to the fairy godmother, where
everything was wonderful, and she was made to feel so special. The fairy
godmother always told the little girl how beautiful and smart, and special she
was. All of the loving at home helped to make the torture at school more
bearable. The little girl was also fortunate to have a wonderful teacher
for first and second grade, who took the time to help. The little girl
was given more time to do her class work, and the fairy godmother helped her
with homework and role played social situations with her. The fairy
godmother spent countless hours picking out clothes that would help the little
girl fit in, even with her meager budget.
All through middle school
and high school, the girl had trouble with math, gym, and making friends.
Whenever the girl despaired of ever making friends or having a "normal
life" (husband, children, etc), the fairy godmother would tell her that
there was someone out there who was waiting for someone special just like
herself, and that she had a lot going for her to succeed. The fairy
godmother would often remark, "I wish you had an idea of how far you have
come. It has been my joy to witness your successful progress over the
years." Also, from time to time, the fairy godmother would look at
the girl and say, "I really love you a lot, Kid." The
fairy godmother, being a sports fan, also encouraged the book-loving girl to
learn to like sports. The fairy godmother said, "Someday, you will
meet a handsome prince who loves sports!" In the social arena, she
found that when she went to her special camp, or to places away from home
(even with non-disabled peers), that she was able to make friends.
Realizing this, the girl decided that she really wanted to go away to college.
The fairy godmother made a book of all colleges with LD programs, and took the
girl to visit them. Even though there was not a great deal of money,
being an unselfish person, the fairy godmother sent the girl to her first
choice school, the University of Vermont. The college was an excellent
choice, as she made wonderful friends, got some dating experience, and did
well with the assistance of excellent LD service providers. Every
semester, the fairy godmother eagerly pored over the girl's college books,
interested in everything the girl was learning. As the girl grew older,
she began to have an even richer relationship with the fairy godmother,
as they could go shopping together and laugh and chat like girlfriends, but at
the same time, the girl knew that she could always depend on the fairy
godmother to be there for her and make her feel safe. Life was really,
One day, while the girl was
home from college for Thanksgiving break, the fairy godmother had some very
sad news. The fairy godmother had to tell the girl that she had cancer,
and that she did not know how long she had to live, but that she was going to
try to beat it. Well, the girl was so heartbroken, that she was unable
to speak for several days (Quite unusual for someone with NLD). The girl
watched, both from college far away and from home, as the fairy godmother
braved her way through chemotherapy, radiation, blood transfusions, back pain,
and all of the other symptoms of the terrible disease that ravaged her poor
body. The girl tried to be brave, as she did not want to upset the fairy
godmother, who was so incredibly brave. The fairy godmother told the
girl that she did not want her to "be brave". She wanted her
to be "natural". The fairy godmother wanted to girl to come to
her with problems or with anything she would have done before the illness.
The fairy godmother wanted things to be as normal as possible. The girl
had never seen such incredible braveness and love for life in anyone.
With so much to live for, the fairy godmother managed to live for five years
with this insidious illness. Then, in June of 1996, the fairy
godmother's first granddaughter was born. The fairy godmother was the
best grandmother that ever was, knitting a blanket for the baby to come home
in, and teaching the girl about how to care for a baby. The girl was
hoping in vain that the fairy godmother would be around to see her baby.
In the early morning hours
of November 22, 1996, the fairy godmother left this earth and went to Heaven.
Although the girl was not sure she believed in Heaven, she knew, without a
doubt, that if there was a Heaven, that surely the fairy godmother would be
there. The girl had a very hard time of it, and started writing to the
fairy godmother in a journal and talking to her, hoping for a sign of
response. Well, one night, in February, 1997, the girl was at a Jewish
Singles Dance at a club in the city, and in walked a handsome prince.
The prince came over to the girl and asked her to dance with him. The
rest was history. The prince and the girl dated for a few years,
building a wonderful relationship. The prince made the girl feel very
special, as he was very loving and supportive. He learned all about NLD,
and when the girl was invited to participate on a panel for NLD adults in
Monterey, California, he was very proud of her and encouraged her to go.
The prince also was very supportive of the girl's singing, going to every one
of her shows, even though they were in the city, and sometimes he missed a
baseball game. (The fairy godmother was right about the prince who loved
sports)! On October 31, 2001, the prince placed the fairy
godmother's engagement ring on the bow of the girl's favorite teddy bear that
had been a gift from the prince. The prince said to the girl, "Will
you spend the rest of your life with me?" The girl, crying joyful
tears, exclaimed, "Yes!"
Now, missing the fairy
godmother very much, the girl tried to summon her presence at all times during
the planning of the wedding. When the girl tried on her first dress (the
one she ended up buying), a song the fairy godmother had loved was
playing--"Because You Loved Me" by Celine Dion. A few months
later, the mother of two of the prince's friends gave an engagement dinner for
the prince and his bride-to-be. Well, the girl found a kindred spirit,
another fairy godmother. This one had been truly sent from her very own
fairy godmother angel up above. The new fairy godmother helped the girl
get her dress altered, helped with party favors and invitations and planning,
but more importantly, became a truly wonderful special friend. The new
fairy gave a very touching speech at the girl's wedding, mentioning how
special the girl's fairy godmother must have been.
Now, the girl is happily
married to the man of her dreams, a prince who treats her like the
princess that the fairy godmother always told her she was. The prince
encourages the girl to try new things, but always understands when her
NLD makes certain things hard. The girl never has to feel ashamed or
embarrassed around him, as he is her best friend. The girl was
forever miss the physical presence of her fairy godmother, as she feels
that she did not get a chance to give back any of the wonderful,
priceless gifts that the fairy godmother gave her. Be that as it may,
the girl knows that her fairy godmother is smiling at her little blond
princess with her handsome, loving, sports-loving hubby. She is
smiling down with a look of pure pride, and a lot of LOVE.