Recently I have been attending a Parent Group at N-Zilla's place of therapy. I'm all about mental health so when a fellow Pediatrics Therapy Associates parent came up with the idea of a parent support group I did what I always do. First I talked myself out of it then I talked myself into it. I've been going for a while now. Maybe a month or so. I see myself in all the ladies sitting in a circle laughing or crying or crying from laughing and it got me thinking about(at least)7 things you should know about parents(especially mothers)of children with special needs.
1. We are have a sense of humor.
We are freak'n hilarious. We can laugh at ourselves, our situation, and appreciate others.
2. We run late.
Not all the time. Maybe it's just me. I don't know. We have great intentions of getting "there" on time but poop, pee, meltdowns, spouse came home late, traffic or time didn't freeze keeps us from getting "there" on time.
3. We are smart.
We are all kinds of smart. We have to be with/for our kids. Something tells me that we were smart before we had children. Book smarts. Street smart. Heck...we've got all the 9 smarts (it's a thing. I
google it) But not so smart that we (I) constantly make grammar and punctuation mistakes. See this.
4. We are the best at making lemons into lemonade.
Also making fermented grapes into wine. Whatever. The point is we definitely know how to roll with the punches and come out stronger, smarter, and funnier.
5. We do but we don't
...revolve around our child's diagnoses. It's so much a part of our life. True-but we also have other interest. Like, why did Jimmy (Evan Peters) sing Nirvana on last week's AHS Freak show (horrible) or will I ever perfect Beyonce's 711 before next girls night?
6. Our booty may be thick but our skin isn't (mostly).
Yes. We've learned to roll with the punches. We've read everything about our child's ability. I mean everything. The good. The bad. The ill informed but some days our emotions are right under the surface. One tiny thing could open the floodgates.
7. We are human.
The most important. We are human. So often as mothers and caregivers especially to children with special needs we lose ourselves. Could it be avoided? I'm not sure. With the weekly sometimes daily shuttles to and from therapy appointments and doctor visits, timed and scheduled everything to be pro-active for our children's needs, being 5 steps ahead and wondering what we could have done differently when things didn't work out. We could get lost in the fog. Forget ourselves. Barely remembering to shower. Sometimes a hug, a phone call, a grown-up dinner without ear muffs is all we need. We need our significant others to see us for all our qualities 1-7 and be human with us.