Special Needs Parenting + Self Care

Lessons I have learned as a mother of a Special Needs Child

“Finding out your child has autism is a whirlwind of emotions. My son is medically complex kiddo.”

 

Lessons I have learned as a Special needs Mom.

*I am at the very beginning of my journey as a special needs mom and I have already learned so much.

Being a mother is tough on its own. Adding outside opinions and medical diagnoses add to the struggles. Finding that balance can be hard.

He has a ton of diagnosis, not just Autism. He is thriving slowly but surely. What I have yet to learn from my 3 years of motherhood is to slow down. Take it all in..savor these moments. “I’m busy” is an understatement. There’s doctors, therapists, more doctors, surgeries, MRIs. You name it my child did it, has it or going through it as we speak.

I have severe anxiety and I didn’t realize that I’ve had it for years it just came to light when I got pregnant with my son and we had our first diagnosis before he was even born.

Yeah, I went to a doctor ..got a prescription .. What I cared about more is my son and his well being. I put myself last…I know everyone says can’t pour from an empty cup. Us moms seem to manage though, don’t we?

First lesson

MotherPhoto by Wendy Wei from Pexels

Being a mother is overwhelming. Follow your gut momma. You live and breathe motherhood. You see your child 24/7 other people see him maybe an hour tops a few times a week. This is the hardest pill to swallow. Questions always with more questions than answers.
Am I doing my best?

Is he going to be ok?

What could I have done differently today to show him I’m his biggest fan?

I want so badly to have validation and guarantees that it will all be ok and I’m rocking motherhood. Instead, I have panic attacks, personal attacks, and anxiety. I’m exhausted and stressed from overthinking… Every little move or no move at all. They say that’s when you know you’re an awesome parent. When you give everything up for that child. I just need to believe. Believe it with anything I’ve got that I am capable of giving 100% to my child.

Start believing.

Second Lesson

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It’s ok to not have all the answers as a mother who loves preparedness it can be very hard not knowing what is coming next. It’s ok to have that Ice cream for breakfast because you don’t have it in you to cook after the night you had with your child that couldn’t sleep. Guilty!

Third lesson

Stop with the guilt and the voices telling you..but she does it better..her kids are so well behaved. That mother travels with her whole family and never complains. Jen is so we’ll put together my outfit is sweat Pants while she’s wearing dresses and looks like a model in a magazine

It’s not reality. Everyone has something. I get jealous too. I’m honest. I get jealous of seeing Disney vacations and trip to the beach with everyone smiling and the only thing I did today is survived a trip to the grocery store

It’s ok. Take a deep breath and move on. Keep scrolling Kate.

Fourth Lesson

I am enough. Somedays I want to stay in bed and not leave for anything. I want to eat junk food and binge watch pointless tv. second guess every move I make… Gotta cut down on screen time… Got to declutter got to do all the things or else I’m nothing and I have to do it all because someone says that’s what it means to be happy and have successful all-around good kids.

Do what makes you happy. It’s harder than it looks sometimes but in those fleeting moments when you’re watching your toddler become independent for the first time and you think when did that happen? You realize wow. Isn’t that something? He’s doing it *cry happy tears* that is happy right there. Proud parent moment when your kids show you that they will be just fine. Soak up those glorious moments because that is what happiness is.

Fifth lesson

Practice what I preach

I struggle to find those little moments and cherish them. The trick is to remain happy through it all. I am human after all and not made of stone. I cry and scream into a pillow on those hard can’t take it days. This mom takes naps on the days  I just can’t adult. I snap at my family and become short when I just need a break but that break never comes. Only when my head hits the pillow at night and I can’t keep my eyes open any longer. Not that I get a goodnight sleep..i toss and turn in worry. I stay up or dream in my sleep that my son needs me..or I think I heard him get up so I’m up checking every hour looking to see if he’s ok. ” A mother does not  sleep they worry with their eyes closed.” The family tells me to take it a day at a time..somedays I succeed in that..other days… I am filled with worry and panic about what the future holds even the next day will bring.

When I see my son on pick up on something he just learned a few minutes ago… I snap back to he’s got this… Kim you got this! I have days I spend way too much time on Facebook or Pinterest and see all these cool ideas or see a kid my son’s age do something really cool and I try it with my son and he says no way and not interested…

I start doubting myself and think maybe it’s me and maybe I’m doing something wrong. Then I have my support team snap me back into reality and say hey we are not all the same..just because Jimmy down the street loves to paint doesn’t mean your child has to.

Go at their pace

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This lesson I am still learning. I want to homeschool and I feel like my fears are getting to me like can I really do this? Am I cut out to be that person my son needs. Then I think I show up every day for him I am here for him always, of course, I can do this I am his Mother. So Moms and Dads out there if you are questioning your worth to your children. Watch how they are with you, children are the first ones to tell you what they need and how to give it or show it to them. You just have to stop. Look. and Listen. I am doing more of that and it is magical. I love my kid. He is awesome and proves his strength and resilience every single day. He will do great things in his own time.

 

Break down of Lessons learned

  1. Follow your Intuition 
  2. It is ok to not have it all figured out
  3.  Stop feeling guilty
  4. You are enough
  5. Practice what you preach
  6.   Pace yourself for you and your child

 

Comment Below let me know what are you struggling with as a parent? What are your biggest concerns or questions with your Autism Journey? Would love to hear from you!

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