I’m crying even typing these words, but maybe there are other parents like me. I hope there are.
The other day the thought crossed my mind that my special needs daughter is a burden, and she’s a burden I’m going to carry for the rest of my life. I can barely look at the screen as I type those disloyal words, but I cannot erase the moment I thought them from my memory.
I think the feeling has been building up for awhile. The groans that escape my mouth as I lift her dead weight. The exhaustion as I get up in the night once again. The pain in my arm as I resist her pushing back when she sits on my lap. Juggling her iPad, the pushing and my phone while I follow along in church. The lack of help. The fact that her room is messy and I’m too tired to clean it. The fact it’s been months since her floor has been vacuumed or mopped and I can’t manage to dredge up the gumption to care.
Every single part of my being regrets I thought that she was a burden — even for a second. She’s the biggest blessing my life. I never thought I’d have a child from my own body. I never thought someone who would enter the world who loves and trusts me unconditionally. And I received those blessings in full.
I got other blessings, too. I have a child who will always be my child. I have a child who will always need me and will never grow out of wanting my hugs.
And then there are those things that are wholly difficult. My daughter doesn’t walk. She doesn’t talk. She doesn’t help me carry her. She isn’t potty trained. She’s afraid of new situations and screams if her environment gets too chaotic.
I hate complaining or even feeling like I’m complaining. I don’t want anyone to doubt my complete love for my sweet daughter. I don’t want anyone else to feel like my blessing girl is a burden. But then I remember I felt that way for a moment, and I’m afraid I’ll never be able to forget it.
And that guilt is another burden I’ll always carry.
The Mighty is asking the following: What’s hard for you to admit as a special needs parents? If you’d like to participate, please send a blog post to firstname.lastname@example.org. 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.