I think you can ask any little girl, as they grow up they have this vision of their dream job in their mind! That job is that of MOTHER!
You thought about it, you saw other people doing that job, they loved it and you couldn’t wait to do the same job.
Then one day there is a company that’s offering this dream job, you go stand in line with all the other moms applying for this job. You hear it’s the best job in the world!
They hand you the job description and tell you congratulations – you are now a MOM!
You are so excited, finally your dream job, the one you prepared for all your life. You start to go about your job, but then you notice all the other moms, that stood in line for the same dream job aren’t doing the same things you are. You seem to be doing a little more then them. Why? You couldn’t understand why since you all stood in the same line for what you thought was the same job description.
Then you look down at your job description and you realize oh my gosh, there are additional qualities that are needed for this job. What are those qualities:
- WILLING TO COMMIT 100%
- ALWAYS ON DUTY
- THICK SKINNED
- TAXI CAB DRIVER
- MEDICAL PROFESSIONAL
- FINANCIAL GURU
- APPOINTMENT SCHEDULER
- WILLING TO GIVE AND RECEIVE UNCONDITIONAL LOVE
- SENSE OF HUMOR
- LOVE WITH NO LIMITS
- WILLING TO TAKE YOUR TIME
- AMAZING AMOUNT OF UNDERSTANDING AND COMPASSION
- BE INCREDIBLY ORGANIZED
- BE ABLE TO LAUGH (WHEN YOU WANT TO CRY)
- PUT YOUR OWN NEEDS ASIDE
And you read “Congratulations you are a perfect fit to be a mother of a child who has special challenges!”
You wonder what does that mean, I never trained for that. I have heard of it, but that’s not the dream job I applied for.
This wasn’t fair! Then you start to wonder why me, why out of all the women in the line did I get chosen to be a special needs mom? I want to be like them, I don’t want the special in front of my title.
I don’t want all the extra work that comes along with being a special needs mom, like being a therapist, a medical professional, nurse, advocate.
Then I decide to go to the HR Manager to talk about the following:
- I want to be understood and heard, I don’t want to be isolated when I face my daily challenges or tasks. I want the other moms, to hear my pain and know my struggles.
- I want them to understand that I am doing the best I can to cope with all the demands that are being placed upon me by my child’s diagnosis, as well as the needs of my family.
- I don’t want to deal with the comments and stares that come with this position.
- I want them to know that our daily struggles with a child with special needs are far more amplified than that of what they are experiencing. The challenges as intense as they may also be prolonged and constant and every aspect of my families life is affected.
So I look at the HR Manager with tears in my eyes and a big lump in my throat and ask “can I find another job, I don’t think I am strong enough to handle this.” Then even before the HR Manager could open his mouth, I heard a little whimper and felt a little wiggle as I look down at the beautiful innocent face looking up at me.
This amazing child is why God blessed me with this special job, why he gave me this special task of loving him, caring for him, protecting and nurturing him because I am strong!
So I grabbed my bag and my baby and looked up at the HR Manager and said
“thank you for your time and this wonderful opportunity you have given me. I am a much better person for having such an amazing job, that of a Special Needs Mom and I wouldn’t change it for the world!”
Part of healing for any mother especially those that care for a child with special needs is the notion of resilience: being knocked down several times, but getting back up each and every time. Facing the challenges and accepting the reality. Getting up and recognizing your successes and your growth are all apart of the healing process and will allow you to move forward in your very special job of being a Special Needs Mom!