I have been attending various caregiver support groups to try to make sense of what’s happened this past year. Talking through my story with other people helps makes sense of this year’s horrible random events.
We have experienced so much terrible loss - either directly or vicariously through our children.
My son has lost school, learning, friends, social life, seeing his brothers and sister in person. He’s lost going on the bus alone, his burgeoning independence, the chance to get a part time job. He’s lost time with his girlfriend. He’s lost feeling safe when he steps outside his home. He knows now that his own government doesn’t care about him.
I can’t express how heavy this weighs on me. We gained a bit of agency when we started the Ready for My Shot advocacy campaign. Yes, we had some people say they’d help us but they didn’t. But we’ve mostly made wonderful connections and new friends all across Canada.
After yesterday's press conference in British Columbia, where it was announced that ski resort workers would get their shot before my disabled son...well that’s just too much.
We will continue this campaign but it isn’t to change the government’s mind to make them value disabled people’s lives. We tried that and failed. That's another loss.
We continue the campaign to show people with developmental disabilities that they matter to us. We value them. We know they’ve lost so much this year. It is unfair. It is inequitable. It is discriminatory. It is ableist. But no matter what the government says (or doesn’t say) about them, I want them to know that they are loved.