As I cleaned up the milk that was rapidly running from the middle of the table down to the floor, I couldn’t hold back the sobs anymore. What a morning! I thought I had it all together. I woke up earlier than normal after not sleeping the greatest thanks to our noisy cat, but swung into action getting myself and Michael ready for the busy day ahead. Michael got up a little earlier too. He talked a bit to his Dad before work, but then seemed to go in slow motion when it was time for injection. His insulin injections have often been frought with tension for both of us. We had made so much progress since the winter though. Lately things have been back sliding though. I don’t know if it is due to the hot humid weather, the end of school or rising blood sugar levels or all of the above, but Michael was not making the injection process go smoothly. He was silly, trying to show off with the equipment, and then deliberately stopping me from doing his injections to make everything go slower when the time to catch the bus was getting closer. I blew. I am not proud of it. When I thought back after he was on the bus (yes the story has a happy ending), I realized that he was not deliberately trying to tick me off and not listen. He was nervous.
He was upset that the injection may hurt and it tends to hurt because we don’t have time to find a better area to inject due to the fact that we get a late start. Vicious circle after vicious circle. There have been some days when we started early with success, but Michael forgets those days. I am no better. I forget that he cannot help a lot of his impulses and needs gentle reminders to stay on track. So sometimes we end up crashing together like this morning. I gave myself permission to have a few minutes to go over my mistakes and the things I did right. I watched some more of Dr. Greene’s great videos while I did my morning chores before work, and I decided what I was going to fine tune for the next morning. It got me thinking of 5 things every exceptional parent has to do to move through the negative to growth. Here they are:
- Forgive yourself: You are not perfect. You do not need to be. We all make mistakes. Learn what you did wrong and don’t repeat it.
- Remember, your child is not being manipulative: Your child is not manipulating you. They are doing the best they can with what they’ve got. If they are struggling, they need your calm and patience more than ever.
- Dissect the situation: Figure out how things played out and why non-judgmentally. We all make good and bad choices. See what would lead to what. This is the best way to teach your child what they can do.
- Praise what you and your child did right: This is tough when there are big explosions on both sides, but it is mandatory that you praise your child and yourself for the things you both did right. This will help with self-esteem and positivity.
- Don’t lose hope: After a bad morning, afternoon, evening or day with your child, it is easy to lose hope they will change, but they will. With your encouragement, belief and love, they will overcome obstacles and become successful. If you need to seek help yourself to believe this do so, but always believe your child can achieve the moon and stars.
Exceptional Parents, do you often feel like giving up on your child when times are rough? Do you feel like giving up on yourself as their parent? Take a deep breath. It’s a bad moment and it will pass. Lots of good moments will take its place, as long as you take care of your mental and physical health so that you can be strong and present for your child. You will show them that even when you mess up by losing your temper, you can regroup and start again. And above all, tell them you love them every single day. 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.