I went to the company sponsored National Day of Prayer event today, and ran into some old friends - people I knew back when I was a board member for the interfaith organization here at work. They never knew what to do with me, really, but they appreciated that I got stuff done. One of them said to me today, "hey, we never see you, what's up with that?" I said, "Oh, life's been crazy, but I'm trying to get out to a few things here and there."
Sitting through this service of prayers to other Gods, I had a bit of time to think. We've all heard that life's like a dance. And I suppose that's true. For most people, life is like dancing a nice graceful waltz, or maybe a tango - maybe even something a little more fast paced, like swing or salsa. But these are dances that, with a few hours of practice, almost anyone can do the easy version fairly competently. Changes and unexpected events may throw you off a bit, but it's fairly easy to step back in to the rhythm of life.
This special needs life, on the other hand, has a more complex rhythm - it's more like a funky 13 count beat, with occasional bars with a random number of beats thrown in for good measure.
The thing is, with practice, we can do this dance too. Oh, adding our own counterpoints can be tricky, and backbeats require a bit more grace, but over time, we get the hang of it. It's really hard to get back into the rhythm when we miss a step, but we get there eventually, and over time we get better and better at keeping in step in the first place.
And we have to get to the point where we aren't staring at our feet the whole dance before we can look up and figure out what we're missing in the rest of the room....