Thursday, October 17, 2013

The big scary question

There's a significant chance that Ryan may not be able to take care of himself when he's an adult. It's not a certainty, but that possibility is always hanging over my shoulder, daring me to turn my head and answer the question that plagues all parents of children with special needs:

What will happen to my baby when I'm gone?

I'm an only child, so Ryan doesn't have any aunts or uncles on my side who could help him. Stu has a brother, but he and his wife have been very busy building their careers and haven't really gotten to know Ryan well; in any case, if Stu and I are old and senile, they probably will be, too. I have a small gaggle of second cousins who adore Ryan, but they're all around my age, and the ones who live nearby don't have children yet.

That leaves Ryan's somehow-related cousin Dylan and my one-year-old nephew Jude as the closest family members who are likely to be around who could look out for Ryan. I my head, therefore, it's critical that Ryan and his cousins grow up together and have a good enough relationship that Dylan and Jude care enough to look out for him. We see Dylan several times a year and the boys get along famously. Jude is still a baby, so we have some time to build that bond.

I should probably also be worrying about who will take care of Stu and me when we're old and senile, because if Ryan were unable to care for himself, he certainly wouldn't be able to help us. But I don't think much about that.

Fortunately Ryan is cute and sweet and little girls like to take care of him, so hopefully down the line he'll marry someone who can keep him on track and pick out a nice retirement home for me.

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