Finding Ninee » Sharing our parenting and special needs stories with heart and humor.

I Wish I’d Known that Everything Will Be Fine

I look at moments that changed my future and I wish I’d known that everything will be fine.

“Something’s wrong,” she whispered. It was 2am. I pulled my pillow closer to my ear; adjusted another over my eyes – but not my nose – because a pillow nest needs to be just so. I drifted, soclose to sleep. I heard it again.

“Something’s wrong,” she said. I sat up, and I knew. I knew something was wrong. I’d known for a while but did not have the words for it. I didn’t know what it was, or if it was even anything. I only knew that my little boy should have been talking.

“Shhh,” I told her. “I need to sleep. Plus, he’s probably fine. He said buh-bye just last week. He waved.”

“Has he said it again?” she asked. “Well…” I thought.

Something’s wrong,” she said.


Years ago, I had a different life in a different house with a different husband. One day, our pregnancy test showed a happy yes line, and we celebrated. Another, my nurse left the room to get the doctor, and we grieved. A few more days, and the walls to the house had For Sale written on them, and we sat on the carpet and divided our CD collection. It felt like the world was broken, but it was only us. I wish I’d known that I’d find new walls. New life.


“He’s not talking,” I said to the pediatrician. My little boy was two, and I was pretty sure that The Voice – the one that whispered at 2am months ago was right. “What’s he saying?” the doctor asked. “Well, he did say ‘truck fell down’ last week,” I said. “But not much else. He says ‘wa’ for water and ‘ha’ for helicopter and sometimes I can’t tell the difference.” I laughed.

“That’s a pretty good sentence for two years,” she said. “Let’s see how it goes.”

I listened to her, and wished I hadn’t. Six months later, we were in the same place, and then calling Early Intervention and speech therapists who didn’t try to get him to speak, but only to pay attention for 30 seconds at a time. Turns out, speaking comes after paying attention for 30 seconds. 

I wish I’d known that we’ll be fine. That by the time he’s six, my son’ll be talking about Plants vs. Zombies to the point of my eye-rolling. I wish I’d known that we’d understand almost all of his words. That he’d be saying “water” now.

I only recently learned that guinea pigs are supposed to squeal. “Maybe ours is deaf,” I think, and on Tuesday, I sat at the kitchen table and played YouTube videos of guinea pigs squealing to see whether our new pet would react. She did, although she’s still not yet speaking.

I remember the day I wondered whether my son was deaf. I turned off the volume to Caillou (aka the kid who sucks), and clapped my hands behind him. He didn’t move. I sat on the floor, hugged my knees, touched my forehead to them, and started crying. It feels like I stayed that way for a long time, but it was probably only minutes before my little boy tapped me, and pointed at the tv.

“Do you want the sound back on?” I asked. He did, and I held him for as long as he let me. We went on a walk, and the sun seemed kinder. I wish I’d have known.


I wish I

In sixth grade, I had the worst teacher. One day, she caught me with a note from a boy named Darren. Darren didn’t actually exist. I’d written the note to myself.

The boy in my class I’d been hoping would ask me to go with him ended up liking my friend Jenny instead. The worst teacher called me to the front of the class and told me to give her the note.

“I take responsibility for writing notes in class and know that’s bad,” I said. “But it’s private.” I ripped it up and threw it away.

During recess, I had to go into her office. She’d retrieved the note, and taped it back together. She’d read it.

“Let’s talk about the fact that you’re adopted,” she said.
“What does that have to do with the note?” I asked, already angry at myself for crying.

My dad tried to get her fired. I’m not sure what happened to her but that day, I wanted to be invisible forever.

I wish I’d known that my dad would take my side and that she was wrong to talk to me about adoption. I wish I’d have known that I’d find better people to love than Kenny and that one day, boys would write me notes on their own. 


“Let’s play thumb puppy!” my son said last night. The only light in the room came from his nightlight, and we were lying in bed, covers up to our necks, snuggled in. “Okay,” I said, and made a fist with my hand, thumb sticking out, wagging.

“Fetch!” his finger human demanded. Thumb puppy fetched. “Now fart,” finger human said while the little boy attached to him was trying hard to suppress his giggles. Thumb puppy farted loudly, and finger human pet him, and put him in time out because that is what finger humans and thumb puppies do.

I wish I’d have known how much joy pretending that my fist is a thumb-wagging puppy would bring me and my son.

Over the years, I wish I’d have known that everything will be fine. That it has been, all along.


This has been a Finish the Sentence Friday post. This week’s prompt is “I wish I’d known…” My co-host this week is the lovely and fabulous Kenya, who has a NEW BOOK out. Special thanks to Jill who thought of this week’s sentence but is unable to participate because she’s like busy or whatever.

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  • Kerry - The part about going for a walk with your son and the sun is my favourite part. Yours is a wonderful lesson, no matter the unique circumstances we all face, that things will be okay. I am so glad it is okay and even better than that, for you.March 3, 2016 – 10:24 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Thanks, Kerry. It’s good to remember that life happens, and when it feels like nothing will ever be okay, five years is such a huge difference and things are mostly okay. I know that’s not always the case, but so far, it has been for me (knock on wood).March 3, 2016 – 10:38 pmReplyCancel

  • Janine Huldie - Aw, everything definitely does have a way of working out for the best even when we can’t see the forest from the trees. Seriously, I have been there and lost count, but just glad to come out the other side still. So beautifully said tonight, KristiMarch 4, 2016 – 3:07 amReplyCancel

  • Dana Dominey Campbell - Fantastic post… I wish I too had known more… so, we would have known to get Christian into therapy and services far earlier than we did. I also wish I would have known then, that how much joy he brought into our lives back then, would only increase, and increase over time… could not love him any more than I do… Best. Son. Ever.March 4, 2016 – 5:02 amReplyCancel

  • Lizzi Lewis - Beautiful, harrowing moments, all much easier to manage with hindsight. I’m so glad your dad took your part, and that you knew it in the end. Glad you advocate for T, and for the times you don’t have to because he’s fine, and you know that now.

    The pillow-nest made me laugh. Does the guinea-pig ‘popcorn’ yet? That’s an interesting one…March 4, 2016 – 6:37 amReplyCancel

  • Ruchira Khanna - I so agree with your perspectives…Wish I’d known…but then life would be different and maybe we would not have met 🙁

    hugs!!March 4, 2016 – 6:58 amReplyCancel

  • Emily - What a perfect last line! I feel like I could have written SO MUCH of what you describe here – the emotions, the worry are spot on…but can we just talk about that friggin’ teacher here? WTF? She TAPED the note back together and then asked you about adoption?!? I would have done the same thing as your dad and tried to get her fired. Most teachers are wonderful, but those bad eggs…ugh.March 4, 2016 – 9:18 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Emily,
      I know. That teacher was SUCH a %$#@&^%%@ poop-head. Like, it still blows me away and it happened how many years ago? I get all angry and upset even remembering how horrible and embarrassing it was!March 4, 2016 – 11:39 amReplyCancel

  • Kenya G. Johnson - Thanks for the shout out!

    Your title and the way I closed my post definitely have the same theme/sentiment.

    I like the way you went back and forth in time.

    That lady that called you into the office reminds me of the one that called me the office to say that I should be thankful to go to that school because my parents didn’t pay the same other parents. Witch! I actually drew her as a witch in art class but no one knew it was her but me. Mrs. Andrews. Ugh. I can’t call her out on your blog but I wouldn’t do it on mine. I wish I had known that she should talk to me like that and had told someone.March 4, 2016 – 11:55 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Kenya,
      UGH to mean witch Mrs. Andrews! My teacher was Ms. Haney. They suck. I love that you drew her as a witch but nobody knew except you. She deserved to be drawn as a witch! So did Ms. Haney. And you’re so welcome for the shout-out. I’ll post on FB too when I get the book in the mail!March 4, 2016 – 4:00 pmReplyCancel

  • Dana - That teacher was HORRIBLE. Poor young Kristi. But thumb dogs who fart…those sound awesome. And to think I have two and didn’t even know it!

    You know how we’ve often said we wouldn’t go back and change things because that might change who and where we are right now? This post reminded me that if I could change things, it would be to tell Past Me that things would be okay.March 4, 2016 – 3:06 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Yeah, that teacher suckity suck sucked. Try the thumb dog farting trick. I bet your kids would still laugh. Maybe Matt, too. 🙂
      And yeah, I guess that’s all I would tell myself too. That and to buy Apple stock.March 4, 2016 – 4:01 pmReplyCancel

  • Lana Lindgren - So beautiful, Kristi. Everything does seem to have a way of working out, but it sure is tough to get there sometimes. I’m finally linking up with you guys today (been wanting to forever). But I can’t find the link up?March 4, 2016 – 3:28 pmReplyCancel

  • Lana Lindgren - Never mind – figured it out!March 4, 2016 – 3:29 pmReplyCancel

  • Michele - Farting thumb puppy has a way of putting it all into perspective, doesn’t it? I’m so glad that you feel good about today.March 4, 2016 – 4:02 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Farting thumb puppy is awesome, Michele. For real one of the imaginative games that I can actually for-real laugh while playing.March 4, 2016 – 8:10 pmReplyCancel

  • Lisa @ Golden Spoons - It’s been a tough couple of weeks around here and I needed the reminder that everything will be fine. A few years from now, I’ll probably look back enthuse weeks and wonder why I was so stressed out about it all!!!

    And, thumb farts – Ha!!! 🙂March 4, 2016 – 5:21 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Lisa, I know it’s been a rough couple of weeks and I’m so sorry… everything WILL (eventually, perhaps painfully) be fine. Hugs to you, friend.March 4, 2016 – 10:21 pmReplyCancel

  • Julie Martinka Severson - First of all, on my gosh, I too, once wrote a note to myself from a pretend boy. I think his name was Kevin. I’d forgotten all about that! Ha! I love that you admitted that. Next, I can not believe your teacher taped back your note! She needed to get a life!!! And then, there’s finger humans and farting thumb puppies. I mean, does it get any better than that? That is the greatest gem of a little moment I’ve had the privilidge to read all week. Truly.March 4, 2016 – 7:32 pmReplyCancel

  • JT Walters - I wish I had known that even having a none verbal child does not diminish the love or communication between us. Yesterday I was sitting in court with Alex (another story for another time) and he grabbed my hand and point to his ear. I looked him with love and said, “Thank you darling for telling me you have an ear infection. Mom promises to take you to the ER and get you treated as soon as we are done in court.”.

    I did too. I looked at my attorney and said my son has an ear infection. I must leave. Being a Mom provides clarity. Alex did have a very bad ear infection. We both have high pain tolerances so if we feel something it is bad. Last night at 4 am he woke me again in direr pain. I thanked him again and promised him I would get his ear fixed. This time at the ER the doctor said he had not seen such an infected ear. Two shots later and two more prescriptions of medicine and we were on our way home.

    I never wanted to be a Mom. I thought I’d never have enough money, time, or resources for a typical child let alone one with two rare disorders.

    I wish I had known how much I’d love my son just as he is and the fact I’d have had twelve of him if I could. Love does truly conquer all barriers and I wish I had known that.March 4, 2016 – 7:49 pmReplyCancel

  • Tamara - It’s always so interesting when I’m in a crisis or grieving period, and I logically know everything will be ok, but it feels impossible to get from Point A to Point B. What happens in between the points? A LOT of growth.
    Everything will be fine You know.. XOXOMarch 4, 2016 – 8:21 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - It so feels impossible when we’re in it. I guess that’s the forest through the trees saying or something like it… So much growth though. xo SW.March 4, 2016 – 10:24 pmReplyCancel

  • Christine Carter - Oh Kristi, I just adore reading your history- all of it. Even the hard parts… Because it draws me in and speaks to my heart so deeply. SO much of this grabs me good. You writing your own ‘love note’ is absolutely precious. Oh bless you, love. And that teacher? Wow. I’m so glad your dad stepped in. And your new walls seem to be holding up beautifully, don’t they? I’m so glad for that. <3March 5, 2016 – 4:35 amReplyCancel

  • Leanne Russell - Hi Kristi,
    I’m not sure if this is the procedure for posting the Finish the sentence Friday. I hope what I’ve done works. Let me know if there is a problem.
    Cheers LeanneMarch 5, 2016 – 8:22 amReplyCancel

  • Bev - It’s so hard to know, sometimes, when things are going to be ok and when they aren’t, because you haven’t yet lived through them. (As a type that out, I realize how obvious that is and totally not insightful, haha.) Anyway, my point is in the moment it’s so hard not to worry and feel like our world it falling apart because we just don’t know how things are going to turn out. But then, if we knew, what would be the point of experiencing life? They suck in the moment, but the make us stronger, I suppose.March 5, 2016 – 3:12 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - I suppose they really do make us stronger. Or wiser. Or something like that. Thanks, Bev!March 6, 2016 – 12:20 pmReplyCancel

  • Kelly McKenzie - As I always say “Oh if we could only have a fast forward button.” How grand it would be to zip forward into the future for Just A Second or Two! Yes, if we’d only could have known …March 5, 2016 – 7:51 pmReplyCancel

  • Allie - Kristi, I am irrationally angry at that teacher! How dare she? I mean, really!?!?! Love the thumb puppet story. Perfect post. I truly had planned on linking up – but now I’m sick. Don’t give up on me:). Love and miss you! AMarch 6, 2016 – 8:08 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Love and miss you, Allie! So sorry to read that you’re sick. Ugh. Hope you feel better soon. Let’s catch up this week?March 6, 2016 – 12:23 pmReplyCancel

  • Nicki - Aaah Kristi this filled me with happiness. (Except for that awful teacher! WTF?!?!)
    Fave line ever: “…the sun seemed kinder.” You’re amazing <3March 6, 2016 – 10:40 amReplyCancel

  • Lisa Moskowitz Sadikman - Wouldn’t it be amazing if we could just know, believe, everything would be fine? I love how you take us with you to these different points in your life when you were so unsure, so afraid and then to your now when things are okay. Always love journeying with you Kristi <3March 6, 2016 – 8:43 pmReplyCancel

  • Mocadeaux - Wouldn’t it be wonderful if life (especially motherhood) came with a crystal ball? In the absence of that I guess we have to chalk things up to life experiences all geared toward fine tuning our insticts and teaching us to trust our gut.March 6, 2016 – 10:17 pmReplyCancel

  • Lisa @ The Meaning of Me - I read this days ago – I swore I left you a comment. This, as always, is beautiful. It would sometimes be very good to know that everything will turn out OK. It would make putting up with the suckiness so much more bearable. But then I suppose we wouldn’t get the benefit of the experience or the life lesson or the makes us stronger part. Right?
    Reminds me of an Emily Dickinson poem where she talks about how she could wait forever for her love if she knew how long forever would be, basically. Clearly, a universal idea.March 7, 2016 – 10:49 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Aw thanks so much Lisa. And yeah, I think the suckiness does make us stronger. At least I hope so. Knowing how long forever would be – I like that.March 8, 2016 – 6:50 pmReplyCancel

  • Nina - Perfect end: “That it has been, all along.”March 8, 2016 – 11:40 pmReplyCancel

  • A Morning Grouch - I love this post – it’s so true how in the moment of something horrible it feels like nothing will ever be okay again. It’s good to remind ourselves that yes, we will be alright. Love how you intertwined so many stories – they all held a grip on me as I was reading.March 16, 2016 – 1:42 pmReplyCancel

  • Linda Atwell - Out One Ear - Yes, if we only knew—it sure would take a lot of useless worry out of the equation of life. This is a beautiful post Kristi. Right now, I’d like to know that it will all be okay in the end. I’m sure it will. I hope it will. But those damn little voices….March 18, 2016 – 4:30 pmReplyCancel

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