special needs mom

‘It’s nothing. Don’t worry.’ She had abnormal, starry blue eyes. A checkup for a mild cough changed our lives forever.’: Mom births baby with Williams Syndrome, ‘genetic disorder or not, we will love her more each day’

“Her low birth weight was dismissed. The doctor told us her heart murmur would ‘dissipate on its own’ and she would be just fine. Little did we know, these were the very first signs. As much as I wanted to convince myself nothing would be wrong, I had a gut-wrenching feeling. My mama heart just knew. They failed us.”

‘What does your son want to be when he grows up?’ ‘Um, well. He’s autistic.’ Silence. I could tell she was uncomfortable.’: Mom to son with autism encourages us to ‘share, normalize’ differences

“There it was. A question I couldn’t really answer without sharing autism. After just telling me all about the things her grandson is doing and will most likely achieve, she felt bad for me. I knew this would happen. It always does. People hear autism, nonverbal, lifelong care and feel bad. I get it. I’m not offended. But his world is not less. It’s just different.”

‘Gianna would love to talk to you.’ I instantly regretted my decision. ‘Do I really want her at my house?’ We set a date.’: Mothers form unlikely bond through special needs daughters, ‘Everyone is struggling. Some of us just hide it better’

“She thought we should meet. Would it be awkward? Texting a stranger? I knew what I needed to do first. Look her up on Facebook. I immediately found her page and was instantly intimidated by her photo. Her profile picture was of her on their wedding day. She was beautiful, thin, gorgeous. There were no photos of her daughter’s face. Everything was vague. Did she think she was Blue Ivy? What’s the deal with that? I am a chronic over-sharer. Surely we wouldn’t have anything in common. Oh how wrong I was.”

‘My autistic son had an atomic meltdown. ‘Can we so something special?’ My heart is so happy.’: Mom in awe after railway staff’s acts of kindness, ‘you truly made a difference in our lives’

“My son is autistic and LOVES trains. Tonight, we were supposed to ride the Polar Express. He was so excited he beat his dad and I up pretty badly. Finally, I had to say, ‘Let’s go back to the hotel.’ I went into the bathroom and silently cried. I wanted this so badly for him. Then, there was a knock on the door. ‘Maintenance!’ They wanted to do something special for our family.”

‘It’s been 5 years since I set foot in church. I have no intention of going back. It comes down to diapers.’: Special needs mom refuses to bring her kids where ‘they’re not fully embraced’

“Poop is where church ends. Poop is the special need that doesn’t get met by ministry. Believe me, I know that big kid pullups are not pretty. When the message finally got through to me, it broke me. My special needs boys were not wanted. They were only included if I was willing to meet all of the ‘unpleasant’ needs.”

‘To the dad at the bounce park, thank you for teaching your child to interact with someone ‘different.’: Mom to son with Down syndrome shares stranger’s act of kindness, inclusion that made her ‘heart swell’

“Your boy took off with the ball Cedar was playing with. You didn’t do what every other parent has done: give the ball back to the child who is different, apologize, and go. This felt genuine, special. You sat down next to Cedar and taught your son to roll the ball back and forth. You saw my little boy loved this so much. Yours was unsure, but you kept showing him how happy mine was. Cedar giggled and clapped. You did, too. I watched in amazement.”

‘Could someone like me?’ Today, my son asked his first question EVER. I was in tears.’: Mom ‘amazed’ by outpouring of love, friendship offers after non-verbal, autistic son speaks for first time

“David is autistic, has no communication skills, and is completely homebound due to medical conditions. He has never had a birthday party with children his own age. His outings outside the home are severely limited. Recently, his grandmother, who is one of his best friends, passed away. I knew he was lonely. How could he not be? Then, for the first time, he spoke. I was floored.”

‘Your son is deaf.’ We were praying it was a huge mistake. They wheeled him out. I lost it.’: Mom shocked by newborn’s severe hearing loss, ‘we had no family history’

“Beckett hadn’t heard for the first 13 months of his life and BAM. He was suddenly hearing. I cried on the way home, if I’m being honest. I received nasty, angry messages. I was ‘playing God’ by wanting to give him the gift of sound. Wanting our son to be able to hear us tell him ‘I love you’ was NOT a selfish thing.”

‘We need to talk. Your baby’s head is BIG. His fingers look like a starfish.’ WHAT? He passed the Kleenex. I lost it.’: Mom births son with Dwarfism,  ‘he was made special on purpose’

“I thought he was joking. ‘Ohhhhh, I was hoping to walk in and see that you two were just very short. Have you ever seen the little people shows on TV?’ What the heck? He was convinced our son was a dwarf. He double checked measurements. He was actually serious! ‘What will our friends think?!’ I couldn’t breathe.”

‘My daughter Penny is not a ‘mistake.’ She is perfection.’: Down syndrome mom explains the difference between ‘inclusion’ and helping special needs individuals ‘belong’

“People often feel awkward asking questions about my daughter. Penny gets sidelined from activities and events because they don’t know how to welcome her. The message of inclusion is, ‘We want you here with us.’ But belonging emerges from a deep desire to not just include the ‘other,’ but to love and be loved.”

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