My husband and I wondered whether we should talk with our inquisitive 3-year old about TS’s disability before they met. Would it scare him? Would he embarrass Trung Son? What do we say? We decided that we wouldn’t say anything–and we’d explain it once he asked. And we decided not to “warn” TS either, certain that by 17–he’s experienced it all with people, especially kids, and their reaction to his appearance.
We picked Son up last night and went to temple. (Son’s family is Buddhist but for whatever reason, he’s never been to a temple) It was late–the kids were tired, the traffic horrendous. But it was worth it!
Dylan took to Trung Son like….(should I say it?) white on rice.
TS has some fingers–one arm is shortened at the elbow–the other, up near the shoulder. And because Dylan is about 3 ft tall…and INSISTED on holding TS’s hand…TS had to bend down and walk around hunched over. They went to the different Buddha’s and bowed, and Dylan picked a tangerine for Trung Son. We then went out to eat. Dylan helped TS by opening a straw for him. The two were inseparable. At the end of the night we dropped TS off, and Dylan asked for a hug. It was a bit of a struggle for TS to reach over with his arm as Dylan was sitting up high in his child seat.
I awoke today to an email that TS had written last night. He was grateful that we had befriended him. He asked that we convey to Dylan how happy he was to have a new friend. And this morning, while on their way to buy breakfast, Dylan asked Mike about his new friend. Not why did he look different–why his hand only had a few fingers, or why he only had half an arm. He asked when he’d be able to see him again.