Special Needs Parents: How do you do it?

Rochelle Followes by Rochelle Followes Additional Needs

Rochelle Followes

Rochelle Followes

I am parent to a gorgeous little blue eyed boy who has complex needs. I have a Facebook page, 'my daily miracle' where I share our life with others...

I bet that every single one of you reading this has either said this statement or had it said to you.

It’s an, ‘I don’t know what else to say’ kinda statement isn't it?

I must admit, I may have said it myself a few times, when I’ve really not understood how I would walk in someone else's shoes.

Reality is, we all walk in our own boots, we all sometimes need plasters to heal blisters now again, or even need a new pair at times in order to carry on with the struggles that come our way.

Needless to say I’ve chucked a fair few pairs away and started again with a new strut to go with them.

This saying has been said to me a lot lately, which is why I’ve decided to talk about it and give you all a new way of looking at it, and maybe make you think before you say it, and for those who have it said to them, I just hope you can relate and take something from what I’m trying to express.

In life we all reach points where we have to make decisions, we all go through trials and challenges, we all have our ups, our hopes and times to reflect.

A huge decision my husband and I made was to try for a baby back in 2013, so just like millions of other couples we wanted to extend our family.

We knew it was going to be life changing and accepted that whatever the baby needed they would get, and we would go through life a day at a time.

Now, at the time, we didn't realise how life changing it would be, but who are we to say that our expectation vs our reality was much different to the next set of parents?

What I’m hoping to get across here, is that every single child that enters this world, besides being an utter blessing comes with their own challenges that may determine the way that family live their life.

For us, our reality was a lifetime supply of hospital appointments, therapy, medications and a whole lot of health worry. Our reality was wondering if the next seizure would be life threatening or not.

I could not tell you what the next parents’ reality is, but I know that we all have something in common, and that is that we are parents to a child/children and we all have something to worry about.

We all want the best for them, and get anxious when we feel they are unwell, unhappy or struggling.

In my friendship circle, yes I stand out as the one with a complex child, but I also fit into a crazy bunch of mums trying to do the best by their child.

Each one of us have worries and are pushed to our limits at times as we are tested by the harsh difficulties that we face.

Some of these may be health, education, or behaviour, whatever they are, they are important to that family. We do it because we love and cherish our children.

Now, I’m quick to admit that I need help just like the next family, and I have days that seem too hard to get through, but there is always a gorgeous boy sitting in front of me to kick me up the bum and crack on with it.

So to answer that controversial question…

I do it because I keep open minded and try not to guess the future, Zachariah will lead the way, and Mummy will be there to catch, push, cuddle and praise.

I do it because I chose to be his Mummy and I am not about to give up on that now.

I do it because I love and cherish my son, and he relies on me and his Daddy to guide him through life. I’m pretty sure my friends would have the same answer when they are confronted with this question.

I do it because I wanted to be a Mummy and chose to have my wonderful little boy.

Challenges, worries, grief will always be there for sure, but the key is getting through those and staying on board the parenting/carers train.

So next time you think about asking this question, divert it into words of encouragement and let them know how much of an awesome job they’re doing :).

Lots of love, Rochelle. (My Daily Miracle)


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