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Things To Do Before I Turn 50

  (also known as my "TA-DA" list as opposed to a "to do" list) It was my 49th birthday a few days ago and this got me thinking. Any birthday that ends with a zero always feels a bit like milestone or a landmark and, when I hit the big "five-o" in 2022, I don't want huge parties or celebrations but I would like to have ticked a few things off my low-effort bucket list.   I see these things as a way to improve my mental and physical health, plus a few slightly off-the-wall experiences that would make for great memories.  Start running again and include the following: Lead a C25K group again  Participate in parkrun EVERY week where possible  Visit local landmarks whilst running  Train for a long race - building up from 5k > 10k > 10 miles > half marathon, with a couple of longer trail races mixed in  Lose a lot bit of weight Post more on Instagram or give the blog a bit of a reboot < ongoing Look at new a career path or additional income stre

How to describe raising a child with a disability


Even though I almost never reproduce anything I read on Facebook, I couldn't help steal this from a friend's status and adapt it slightly.  Original source unknown.


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How do you 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 this:

When you’re going to have a baby, it’s like planning a fabulous vacation trip to Italy. You buy a bunch of guide books and make your wonderful plans. The Colosseum, the Pantheon, Michelangelo's statue of 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. Upon your exit the stewardess 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 and buy new guide books. 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 and 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 go away because the loss of that dream is a very significant loss.  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.