For The Special Needs Parents

You might be feeling defeated today.

The exhaustion and anxiety have set in. You feel like Sisyphus with his rock. You got so far with your child, and then something went wrong.  It could have been any number of things; A meltdown. A bad trip to the doctor.  A denial of benefits. A call from school, or a cruel comment from people who should know better. It’s taken it’s toll, and all you want to do is run, scream, or disappear.

That’s okay.

You need to remember something; there was no instruction manual included when your child was born. That was even before the symptoms, doctor appointments, and diagnoses. Since then, everyday has felt like a battle.

That’s because it is.

We’re raising special children in a world that wasn’t designed for them. A world that craves simplicity and often abhors those it sees as “difficult” or “strange”.   Most people don’t want to have to deal with anything unpleasant that may threaten the comfort of their own bubble.

We don’t have that option.

We’re not superheroes. We’re not inexhaustible. We can’t take care of everything with the wave of a hand. We get sad, and disappointed, and angry. Angry at the world and even our own kids when they’re just too much to handle. Then we get angry at ourselves for those feelings.

Guess what? You’re allowed to feel those things.  Know why? Because every parent on the planet does.  For some reason, though, we tend to think we’re supposed to be the exception.  Social media has convinced us that parenting a child with special needs means that we’re supposed to be some kind of saints. After all, we’re only handed the things we can deal with, right?

Wrong.

We’re just people who are trying to make the most of life and doing everything we can to  insure our kids get the chance to do the same. That’s why we keep fighting. Why we pursue every treatment, therapy, and opportunity. Because our kids need us. We’re the only ones willing and able to deal with the difficulty. We can’t adapt them to fit what the world wants. We can only adapt our own worlds to fit what they need.

The fact that you’re reading this, that you got up this morning and gave it another try, that you haven’t given up, means that you are doing more for your child than anyone who isn’t on this journey could ever really appreciate.

So be gentle with yourself. Let yourself cry and rage and give up for the moment. You’ll bounce back. You’ll pick yourself up and do what needs to be done for that child you love. It’s okay to concede the battle today.

Because you never give up the war.

Keep fighting.

God Bless.

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