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Sunday, July 22, 2012

Community II

I already talked a little about community here, but since then I've discovered a new one that has already made a big impact in our lives. The LP community extends throughout the world. Many countries have a national association. I've discovered here in Spain that rather than a national group, there are various, according to the region in which you live. I'm so glad that Belalu lives in a time when connecting with people who share her condition can be that easy.

The Internet provides lots of ways of connecting with people, too, from FB to blogs to the Web pages of the above-mentioned associations. I don't live in a big metropolitan area, however, within a week of Belalu's diagnosis, I had met another mother in town whose daughter has achondroplasia. And within a week of being here in Vigo, I'd connected with another family whose daughter has achondroplasia. Both times, the women were warm, welcoming and totally understanding about my interest in meeting with them- I didn't really have to explain much beyond "my daughter has hypochondroplasia." It's been the same on the Internet. I'm getting to know lots of amazing, wonderful families whose children also share a skeletal dysplasia. People I never would have had a chance to meet otherwise.

It is so nice to have so many personal experiences when the technical information we've been searching for isn't always available or easily accessible. Then again, sometimes it's not technical info we need, but just that personal connection with someone who's been there before us, or is going through something similar. I look forward to connecting more with LPA and our chapter when we get home, and hope to meet more families in person in the coming months.

In regards to Fundación Magar here in Vigo: The woman in charge of the group called a few days ago, and we're getting together this Wednesday. She has a daughter who is 13 years old with achondroplasia. We are looking forward to meeting a family here in Vigo and learning more about their association and their experiences here in Galicia.

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