Meet the Family – Nov 2019

This month’s Family of the Month features Steven and his mother Hyun Ok Kim.

“Hello!! My son’s name is Steven and at the tall height of 6 feet 3 inches, he is 19 years old. He is currently attending the Long Island Westhampton Beach Learning Center BOCES and lives in Suffolk where he was born and raised.

To our family, Steven is our ray of light. Our only child, Steven, always warms the heart of our family and makes us smile. He loves his mother so much and my big child is always so sweet. Steven likes to listen to Korean music on his iPad and look at his album photos. Sometimes you can hear him humming along by himself. Ever since a few years ago, he found watching cuckoo clocks to be fascinating as well.

Now he does horseback riding and attends music classes to learn various instruments. He is slowly learning with his long fingers going back and forth on the keys of the piano. He is also learning tae-kwon-do. Even if his movements fall short, he does his best and loves to do it.

Steven’s memory is really good. He remembers all the names of the staff at school and calling them using ‘Miss’ or ‘Mr.’, and he even remembers the names of his elementary school teachers and friends.

As our family moved deeper in eastern Long Island, there were many benefits and experiences but it was very difficult to find a school that suited Steven. To get to the school we wanted him to attend, you have to drive at least an hour to get there. There were many times when I’d get worried about his behavior problems. As children grow older, they often have stronger self-assertions, but sometimes they become anxious about their dislikes. I want to tell my son “Steven, at first glance it seems that there are so many things you aren’t able to do, but remember that there are so many things you can do.”

I think that a healthy and right society is not a place where people with disabilities and socially weak people are separated from facilities, but a place where we live and act with others in the community. It is a process that is still growing while in the Korean community and CIDA and I have learned good information. We hope that CIDA will give hope and courage to all families with disabilities, and continue to grow in order to solve problems in the right direction with the community. Thank you.”