My Confession as a Special Needs Mom to the 'Typical' Moms

I see you, Mom. You and your child. I see you, and I think to myself how beautiful you both are. I wonder if you even know it. I doubt it. You probably think you’re the worst mom in the world most days, but I see you as perfection. And that little one is just gorgeous. I see you both at the grocery store, at the park, at the mall, online. I see you and I can’t help it — I feel jealous. I know we all have our struggles and no one’s life is perfect, but…

Every time I see you on an outing with your diaper bag full of lots of things, and not one of them is a stethoscope… I get jealous.

I see your faces in pictures with sweet smiles and everyone’s lips are this perfect shade of pink, not purple… and I get jealous.

I see you put your little ones down for naps or bedtime whenever they get tired and never trying to stave off sleep because there are medicines to give… and I get jealous.

I see you at the pool wearing swimsuits with little chests that don’t have the scars of surgeries and chest tubes… and I get jealous.

I hear you planning family vacations without a word about plotting all the hospitals on the route… and I get jealous.

I hear about little scares where there was a thought that something might be wrong, but it turns out it was nothing at all… and I get jealous.

I don’t want to feel that way at all because I know. I know your life has struggles and challenges I could never understand. I know that just because there are pink lips and no scars that there are other things I cannot possibly see. I know you are dear to me, and you deserve nothing but my joy and celebration at your successes. Please know I feel the joy too.

And please don’t misunderstand. I am jealous, but that feeling is pretty fleeting. I’d be lying if I told you I wanted to trade places with you. The things that have happened to my daughter are bittersweet, but I truly believe we are the sum of all our experiences. Every moment we experience is a variable that, combined together, make us who we are, and I simply couldn’t imagine a more beautiful equation than my daughter and the life we lead. But sometimes when I see you, Mom, I wish… 

Nap time could be whenever she falls asleep.

Smiles were complimented by perfectly pink lips.

Vacations didn’t depend on hospitals.

Chests didn’t have zippers.

And my diaper bag would just have diapers.

… But only for a moment.

Another Mom trying to do her best

The Mighty is asking the following: Write a letter to anyone you wish had a better understanding of your experience with disability and/or disease. If you’d like to participate, please send a blog post to [email protected] Please include a photo for the piece, a photo of yourself and 1-2 sentence bio. Check out our Share Your Story page for more about our submission guidelines.

Find this story helpful? Share it with someone you care about.

Related to General Parenting

3 Tips for Explaining My Child's Differences to Your Kids

Many of my sweet friends have asked me the following question: “What do you want me to tell my kids about Julia?” I love my friends for asking this. I love that they’re talking to their kids about Julia. I love that they want my opinion and my words. I love that they want to [...]

8 Ways to Help Families in the Hospital

We have all known someone in the hospital. For our friends and family, they know how familiar we are to the hospital and I doubt that any of them are surprised when we go back in. Here are a few ways that you can support someone who’s in the hospital. 1. Make a meal. Nothing complicated; something [...]

You Can Stop Trying Because This Amputee Already Won Halloween

Josh Sundquist is a motivational speaker, Paralympic ski racer and bestselling author. He’s also a master at Halloween costumes. Check out this year’s costume below: (function(d, s, id) { var js, fjs = d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0]; if (d.getElementById(id)) return; js = d.createElement(s); = id; js.src = "//"; fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js, fjs); }(document, 'script', 'facebook-jssdk')); Post by Josh Sundquist.   [...]

When I Discovered I Might Have ‘Learned Helplessness’

Life at times seems so random, chaotic and just plain out of our control. Try as we might to prevent bad things from happening to ourselves or to the ones we love, it sometimes feels pointless. We begin to question our efforts. Are we doing enough? Could we have done something different? Sometimes we wonder, “Why even bother?”  [...]