January 7, 2008
SCHUYLER'S MONSTER: Sadness and Joy
Rob: I think it's pretty clear that I can be a sad person. It certainly comes out in my writing. Schuyler's situation makes me sad. I think about it. Sometimes I have dreams, I dream about her, and in my dreams she talks to me, and she tells me everything's going to be okay. And then when I wake up the next day, it's the first thing that hits me, that it was a dream. So it is sad, and it does weight down on me.
It doesn't seem to be sad for her, though. She's always very positive. She gets frustrated, certainly. But I don't know that she seems to get depressed about it. I think she's accepted the situation and is ready to fight. And so the joy that I get and the strength that I get in my life is that which I draw from her. And in that sense, she's made me a better person. I'm certainly ten times the person I was before she was born.
I think... There's a temptation, I would think, to feel pity for parents who have special needs kids. And yet, I see how much Schuyler has changed my life, and how much she's improved me as a human being, and I sort of think that people shouldn't pity me, they should envy me. They should be jealous because I've got Schuyler in my life, I've got Schuyler doing the "Schuyler Effect" on me.
And if they don't they should. They should envy me. And I hope that comes out in the book, I hope I represent her accurately and in a way that people can see beyond her disability to this amazing person. It sounds like a cliche, and it's absolutely true.