One thing I love to do is read! I go in waves, checking out books by the arms full at the library only to get through a couple before returning them to the library. One book I happened to pick up is entitled Reflections from a Different Journey: What Adults with Disabilities Wish All Parents Knew edited by Stanley D. Klein, Ph.D., and John D. Kemp. This book is a collection of essays written by adults with disabilities.
One essay thus far has been poignant for me. Entitled, The Virtues of “Ballpark Normalcy” by Lisa Blumberg, Lisa writes:
“I wish that someone would tell parents about the virtues of ballpark normalcy. Ballpark normalcy refers to a life that is not quite normal–but is ‘in the ballpark.” This type of life is a little harder than a normal life. It is also a little better because one has the heightened perception and quirky insight that comes from being on the circumference of the mainstream.” (page 23)
As I continue my journey down the road of a masters of counseling to become a licensed professional counselor, this insight has stuck with me for several days after reading it. Why is that? I believe it is because every person is in the ball park. Being born with a physical disability, Lisa shares with us (the readers) that people with or without disabilities are in the ball park. All are players on the field. The only limits are the one you might set for yourself.
For most of the writers of this book, they grew up during a time when rights were not a given and buildings did not have to be ADA approved. But their wisdom is ageless, I too have ballpark normalcy. I believe we all do. We all have our quirks, our limitations, our moments when we soar and our moments when we falter. Lisa, through her essay, has given me some new insight into understanding myself and for that I am thankful!