Austism spectrum. Life-threatening food allergies. Heart conditions. Travel impaired? Hell no. This post is dedicated to families who have taken extra steps to get out and about, despite the additional work, risk, and sometimes anxiety. I tend get trapped in a definition of 'travel' as someplace new and adventurous. But the benefits of travel can apply to everyone, no matter how big or small the trip. Sometimes, something as simple as heading across town can bring a change of perspective, and a very appropriate travel opportunity.
The photograph above is Leo. He is eight. He and his family were able to have a fantastic time together at the San Francisco Exploratorium because the museum hosted a special event called Autism/Aspergers Family Night. Here is how Leo's Mom felt about the evening: The event was fantastic. Leo and the girls frolicked. I was floored -- and so, so grateful. I've never seen a non-autism organization put so much effort into meeting the needs of my son and his friends. My faith in humanity has been restored.
This is Noland. He is two. This month he got to see lots of trains, first at Legoland, and then real ones at Roaring Camp in the Santa Cruz, California mountains. They had to pack his food, and steer clear of any peanuts headed his way, but it turned out to be a roaring success! Here is the email from Noland's Mom when they returned: Train ride was worth it...Noland loved the steam train! We had a big adventure day. We did the 11am steam train through the mountains. Of course the family across from us pulled out their emerald nuts and the lady next to me ate a snickers bar but we shielded Noland and he loved the experience.
This is Krista. Based on what the doctors said when Krista was born, we weren't sure she'd make it out of the hospital. Krista is two, and she already knows how to ski. Here is what Krista's Mom had to say once she got up on skiis: Krista was pretty fired up to get her first turns in at Squaw this weekend! She had gotten really tired of dropping off the sisters to go skiing and being left out of the fun, so I decided it was her turn. She got 6 runs in on the beginner lift at Squaw and is still beaming! She made Jan put her skis and poles right next to her when she took her nap later in the day!
I do not understand what it must feel like to manage these circumstances. But I know what I can do - I can provide support and encouragement at every opportunity. Happy travels, to ALL. And thank you, Debbie Dubrow, for giving travel photos a voice on Fridays.