Michael has dreams, big dreams and I’m so proud of him. Some days are hard days. He has trouble focusing and wanting to learn. Still, even with these challenges, he talks about becoming a doctor, becoming a IT professional, or designing maps for routes. The last one was a suggestion from his father and I because of his great sense of direction 🙂 All things aside, he is positive about what he can accomplish and that makes me feel proud and hopeful about his future too. This is especially true when we have a string of difficult days where anxiety is high. I feel powerless to help him, and feel quite exhausted from dealing with fights every step of the way. We fight over control, or rather Michael fights his father and I over EVERYTHING saying we have to follow his rules. Life is hard when you have high anxiety as well as autism. And I’m not always the best example of calm and control that I want to be. At these moments, I remove myself and go somewhere to another room, breathe, cry, and in general, calm down so that I can see things in a more positive light again and help Michael find that positive light in his darkest moments. Then I look for tools to help him and me, great books, great advice from others, both with autism and without, who have walked in our shoes, as autistic individual and parent or both. I’m learning right along with Michael that you should never stop being positive that life can get better as long as you let yourself start again and move forward. He has taught me that with his resilience in the face of challenges and fears.
Today being a fresh day and week, I am making myself a promise. I will take my journey as an Exceptional Mom day by day, help myself by looking for support in my community and through prayer and meditation, and never stop dreaming that with work, love, and compassion, all things are possible, even in our darkest moments. Michael has shown me this when he is angry and anxious, then forgives just as easily and freely. He is able to start over and move ahead carrying a much heavier load than me. If he can do, I, as his mother, owe it to him and myself to keep future dreams and possibilities alive in my high moments of doubt. I can and will leave out the dreams I have for myself just as Michael will!
What future dreams and possibilities do your Exceptional Children teach you, Moms? How have they defined what is possible for themselves and you by being strong and positive? Life is hard sometimes, but I truly believe if we seek support, connect with others, and most important of all, see when we’re in need of a calm place to regroup, we can do amazing things in the world and encourage our Exceptional Child to do the same. Until next time.