This week I realized I am tired. Purely exhausted from dealing with all the paperwork that is my child. This paperwork is growing from charting his daily food and insulin intake, to charting his sleeping patterns, to charting his behaviors and finally ending with charting and observing reactions and side effects of the medication he is on. This does not include talking with all the medical professionals involved with his care, following up with lay people for summer camp (which has to be finalized now for June). Dad and I do our best to split most of this, but still, it is a huge undertaking. I started to think the other day that I have a reason to want to say, to hell with it some days, and go and soak in the bath with a novel and a glass of wine and forget about all of it. But I know I can’t do that nor do I want to. Michael is my son. I love him. I want to make sure he is healthy, happy and progressing, and only a parent can worry and take care of all those things. The problem is that until recently, I have been forgetting the child underneath all the labels, the treatments, and the psychological and sociological observations. I (like all Exceptional Parents I know, some two or three times over), have had to be parent, doctor, nurse, therapist and teacher all in one, but the most important role, that of parent, would get neglected.
I have missed just enjoying Michael’s company. Yes, there have been psychologically challenging days with him, but even on the days when things are going well, I have been too exhausted to enjoy the rest of it. I thought of this over the weekend when I was so tired and wiped. I vowed to myself, I would start looking,I mean really looking at Michael, the sweet, smart little boy who loves maps and directions, cooking and baking, and music. I love his laugh and spirit. I love his energy and how his charisma overpowers everyone and everything in a room. I love how energetic and funny he is. I love the kid, the spirit in him. I need to remember that underneath all the paperwork, my little boy, the incredible human being I was privileged to bring into the world, resides. And I need to go back to enjoying doing fun things with him. With Spring Break coming up next week, I look forward to that. I am lucky that I will be home with him.
Exceptional Parents, how many of you have forgotten the child underneath all the paperwork required for their care and growth? How many of you have burned out doing the necessary, that you forgot to enjoy the little things about your child? It’s so easy when we are tired and so busy as parents. Don’t worry if this has happened. Learn from the past, and in the present and future start to take steps to enjoy your child. Put aside time for things like going for a walk, playing outside, reading together, taking in a movie, where you can have quality time with them and see the child that is there underneath all the labels. That is your miracle. That is the being you are doing all the hard work for. That is the spirit and soul that will bring more beauty into the world with their unique light. Until next time.
I am a writer, speaker and parent coach. I blog about how my exceptional son with autism and type 1 diabetes is raising me to a better human being and exceptional mom. My mission is to empower other exceptional parents to trust in their parenting instinct while letting their exceptional child open their eyes to all that is possible! For more information on my coaching services and to download a copy of my FREE EBOOK “5 WAYS TO HANDLE EXCEPTIONAL FAMILY ANXIETY” see my website, http://www.creatingexceptionalparenting.com