How would you talk to a disabled child – with Passion?

Photo by Adam Hollingworth

Photo by Adam Hollingworth

Thanks to Rachel Browne for her article in the SunHerald newspaper “a life time of caring for kids saved from water”, highlighting the plight of children disabled by near drowning, and highlighting the tragic statistics associated with drowning in Australia.

During this process we had the good fortune to have Adam Hollingworth do the photo shoot. It was clear that Adam was passionate about what he does. But what I really appreciated was Adam’s interaction with Samuel.

Too often people when talking to children like Samuel direct their questions/comments etc at the parents and talk about the child like they don’t exist. They assume that just because the child is severely disabled, and is unable to communicate in words, that they are unable to grasp anything.

Not Adam, he hit the nail on the head! He spoke directly to Samuel, interacting with him on the assumption that Samuel knows what is going on and would respond in his own way. Which he does! So thanks Adam, an example of a professional and personal approach to your work that was truly appreciated.

The Sun Herald issue focused on a number of safety issues, and it was interesting to read the editorial, which talked about our failure as a society to address some of the risks that we face when dealing with water.

The preparation for the Rachel Browne article came on the top of this story about a missing autistic child. Sadly the toddler was subsequently found in the river after he had drowned, continuing the sad story of child drownings.

It was also interesting to contrast some of the other articles in the paper such as this article on the syndrome of cotton wool treatment of children.

It is an interesting debate about how far we take safety for our children. I am passionate about caring for our kids, but somethings featured in the cotton wool article above are just taking it too far.

How far would you go to protect your child? How far is too far? Let me know…

Who are you?


It’s an interesting thought isn’t it?  So if you stop and reflect on what you are doing, what you are saying and what you are passionate about who or what are you mimicking and why? Are the thoughts you are expressing really yours?

To borrow the words of a Bruce Springsteen song intro “blind faith in your leaders or in anything will get you killed” (or at the very least damage your reputation!)

It does not mean that someone else’s opinion is not valuable, it does not mean their life is not worthy of mimicry or that their passion is not worth being passionate about.

What it does mean is that without deep reflection, and analysis about why you repeat someone else’s opinion, or why you mimic their behaviour, or why you are sold on their passion you may be selling yourself short, and being someone else instead of being yourself, and the best you could be.

Truly evaluating why you say, do or believe something might lead to a light bulb moment! It may lead you into a deeper conviction about what you do or say or it might lead you to a dawning realization that some things are or have been on autopilot, and really need some fresh thinking.

This process might lead to some fear, fear caused by the prospect of change….. but what is it that you are afraid of… being authentic?

Johnathon Field of Awake at the Wheel, provides some great insight in his post “The neutral fallacy: There is no sideways in life” where he says “you wanna be afraid, really afraid, take a look at what your life’ll look like not if you try and fail… but if you keep on keeping on for decades. That’s the real nightmare scenario for most people”

So what beliefs, opinions, actions etc are you holding on to without thinking about them? And for those willing to do the thinking what are the best tools you have found for helping you examine your thoughts/beliefs?
Let me know……….




photo credit