Understanding Parenthood From Two Exceptional Perspectives

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Ah parenthood. It’s one of the joys of my life, and sometimes one of the frustrations. Exceptional parenthood, well, that’s a whole other ballgame. I know Michael loves me, and I love him, but sometimes I feel so frustrated. It seems I can’t do enough to help him with his anxiety, or with the management of his anxiety. I will talk with him, watch his imaginary play scenarios and interact with him, try and help him by showing him tools to calm down about things that worry him, like schoolwork, and expectations of teachers, and we’ll still have fights and tantrums and, like any child, him thinking I’m being unfair.

“When I’m going to have children Mommy, I’m going to let them tell me where to drive. I’m going to let them have junk food too.”

It’s funny and frustrating. I agree smiling to myself. Yeah right kid, I think. Famous last words.. Every kid thinks they’re going to be a better parent than their own parents were. Sometimes they are right, sometimes wrong. But most of us fall somewhere in the middle. It’s not easy being a parent or a kid. I think the only thing you can do is check in with each other and be honest. I have to say  that with all this though, when I hear him talk about his wife, his children, his future in such positive terms, it does fill me with hope that he will find the tools to handle his anxiety as he grows up. He is such a smart kid. By trying to understand parenthood and rules, he is pretty much at par with most kids his age. This makes me happy.

He also asks questions. “Why” is a favorite one. Some days I like it, some days I want to say “because I said so.” Still, it is all good and I am glad for it. Michael reminds me how important it is to question things, to probe, and to dream. He has been showing me all of the above even when we have these challenging times.

Exceptional Moms, how do your Exceptional Children react to your parenting for better or worse? How has your parenting changed over the years? Are you more or less fatalistic? We all have our rough days and nights, but for the most part, I truly believe that our kids teach us strength, love and tenacity in the face of obstacles as we do for them. Until next time.

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