When your child is diagnosed with a special need, it changes you. It strips you of the dreams you had and tosses you into a scary world full of a new vocabulary and a ton of doctors. It makes you doubt yourself and God. But after the dust settles, you begin to grow and learn, and if you’re open to it, having a child with special needs will help you become a more grateful, happier person.
You are Stronger than You Think
Even wallflowers turn into untiring advocates for their child with special needs. Trying to make sure your child is well cared for by doctors and while in school takes a lot of effort and work. You learn to stand up for your child better than you have ever stood up for yourself.
“It totally consumes you,” explains Amy Ohler, “some days you just want to cry, but in the end all that matters is as the mother of a special needs child you will do whatever it takes.”
Live for Today
Life is short. Being the parent of a child with special needs puts things into perspective. Every other “problem” pales in comparison to the obstacles your child faces.
“(Being the parent of a special needs child) has taught me how important it is to be present, how special every moment on this planet is,” says Matt Figi, “and that as much as I like to think I can control everything, I can’t.”
Parenting a child with special needs allows you to be grateful for everything you have in your life. You begin to appreciate every little blessing you’ve been given. You become a part of a world you never imagined and befriend strong and inspirational children and parents who are able to smile through pain and struggles.
“With Luke, everything has been tested,” says Jackie Smolinski, “…even my faith. There is one thing that will remain untested and that is our unwavering love for our beautiful son, a son so precious and innocent of the cruelties of the world around him. A son so strong as he has endured so much in his short life; a son who stands as an example to all those around him. That he will triumph over all of his obstacles in order to reach his milestones, milestones that seem so small but require so much of his strength to achieve. Being Luke’s mom has taught me more than I learned in a lifetime before him. More about who I am, who I want to be, and most importantly who I will become being Luke’s mom.”