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I See You There, Special Needs Parent

I see you there.

I see you in the doctor’s office trying to figure out what is wrong with your child. I see the worry on your face. I see the heartbreak you are feeling but trying not to show. I see the brave face you put on to your child and the world. I see your struggle as you wonder where to go from here.

You are a special needs parent.

You never thought this would happen to you. You don’t know anything about “the system” or how to navigate your way through it so your child can have everything he or she needs. You have no one to talk to, no one that really understands. You rejoice at every new thing your child does, no matter how small it may seem to others, because it is HUGE to you. You try to find others who are like your child, so they know that they are not so strange. They are beautiful and you want them to KNOW that. I see everything that you have given up. I know this may include a job, friends and family you always thought would be by your side. I see the sleepless nights, filled with worry. I see the smile on your face when you think about the day and everything your child accomplished.

You have a special needs kid.

All this really means, when you get right down to it, is that you are a fierce and protective parent who stands up for your child, no matter the cost to you. I see you fighting back the urge to punch someone in the face when they stare at your child. Don’t they see that they are beautiful? Don’t they realize that sound they just made was a “I am happy to see you” sound? I see you fighting with the doctors because you know your child better than anyone else. I see you going to the hospital every month (or more) because your child is sick, and their bodies are fighting so hard. I see the mixed feelings you have EVERY DAY because you love your child more than words can say, but sometimes you just want the pain to go away! Sometimes you just want them to be normal. I see you wondering what that would be like… if only they were normal.

I see you there, you special needs parent.

You’re doing a great job! I see you shaking your head with doubt, but it’s true. Your child knows that YOU love them, just for who they are. I see your struggle, your joy and your pain because I am there too. I hear your cries. I see the tears of joy. You are not in the alone. YOU ARE DOING A GREAT JOB! And your child is thriving because of you!   

tracy and her family


This post originally appeared on X-linked.

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