Holland - Before and After

Before I came to Holland,
I lived in Italy,
And the people who I called my friends,
Were my kids and family.

They were the focus of my day,
The centre of my life,
I tried to be a good mother,
And a kind and dutiful wife.

And then five and a half years ago,
It happened one Shabbos morning,
I was unceremoniously dumped
Into Holland ­ without warning.

It's taken me quite a while,
To this I will admit,
To learn to like and love Holland,
To see how much I benefit.

I've made the most wonderful friends,
I've met a whole new crowd,
And now that I am one of them,
I belong and I feel proud.

From the driver of the school bus,
Who waves so cheerily,
And the lovely escort who always smiles,
And has a good word for me.

And the excellent teachers at school,
And the various therapists,
The music, the speech, the physio,
There's no end to the list.

And my after-school career,
Who I cannot exist without,
I wouldn't have come this far alone,
Of that there is no doubt.

And then there's also MIGDAL
On Tuesday and Wednesday,
To all the extraordinary volunteers,
Who work and sing and play.

And all the lovely people,
Who help with respite care,
They all possess such special hearts,
They are so very rare.

And all the other mothers,
In Holland are my friend,
I cannot name them all,
‘coz I would never end.

But one thing I can say,
That had I not become Dutch,
I would never have known all these special people
I would have missed out on so much.

So I thank HKB"H
That He gave me the sense to see,
That Holland with all its ups and downs,
Is a wonderful place to be.

This article first appeared in issue #10 of Down Syndrome Amongst Us

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