I'm snowed in again and starting to feel the frustration at not being able to do everyday tasks like shopping... I know if I could just get to the main road, that there is a remote chance the council have it gritted and I could get into town to restock the cupboards!
As I was lying awake in the small hours, it occurred to me how the situation could be applied to the communication difficulties our children have. We are happy and comfortable in our warm house on the top of the hill. Everything we need is to hand, there is food in the fridge, and some oil in the tank so we are pretty self sufficient. The views are spectacular and apart from a little cabin fever, we are ticking along nicely. However, when the food runs out and the heating isn't working, we are going to find we need to reconnect with the outside world... Herein lies the problem. We know what we need but there is a huge obstacle in the way. Knowing where you need to go, or what you want is one thing, but getting it is another.
Whereas some people are equipped with a 4x4 jeep or snow chains, our children have the equivalent of a Mini with slightly balding tyres so the trip down the snow covered ice impacted hill is a more daunting prospect. Not impossible, but is going to take a lot more planning and a generous dollop of caution. With love and intervention, we throw a bit of sand down so the tyres can take hold and get them moving. A bit more sand, help with the steering and the occasional push and the main road is in sight...
At times we question whether its fair or not to force our kids out of the house and into the snow to get them where they need to go. Jeanie from PlanetOutreach-ASD wrote a thought provoking post on this recently and combined with the comments on the blog, it made for great reading. The general consensus is that while it seems a little unfair at the time, as our kids get older, we want them to reach the gritted road and what lies beyond. Whether they need us to steer the Mini and throw sand under the wheel for as long as it takes, or they manage to get their own 4x4 is fine by us.