Dear Special Needs Mom Who Is Ready to Give Up…

…I know how alone and tired you feel, but you aren’t allowed to quit, because you know no one will love your child the way you do.
Be Our Guest | posted by Dayna Abraham
Dayna Abraham, a special needs mom
Dayna Abraham is the founder of Lemon Lime Adventures, where she shares tips and real-life advice on how to embrace life's imperfect moments, from raising a child with special needs to embracing all of life's detours along the way. She is the co-author of several best-selling books, Sensory Processing 101, STEAM Kids, and Learn and Play with LEGO. Her new book, The Superkids Activity Guide to Conquering Every Day, is scheduled to launch in August 2017. When Dayna is not writing, she is busy with her online store, Project Sensory, where she works to spread awareness and supply simple tools to solve everyday sensory struggles. 

I see you crouched down against the wall with your knees to your chest and your eyes red and swollen. I hear you. I hear your cries of frustration, your filtered screams for help through your gritted teeth.

I know how it feels. I promise I do. I know how right now you want to give up. You don’t think you can go one more night with things being thrown at you. You don’t think you can bear one more day of stares when your child has yet another meltdown in the underwear aisle at Target. You don’t think you can have one more fight with your partner, one more judgment from your parents, or one more missed play date.

I know how warm your cheeks are right now. I know how fast your heart is beating and how the pain in your chest is literally too much to carry another day. I know.

I know that right now it never feels like it will get better. I know that makes you feel guilty, right? I mean, so many other parents deal with so much more. I know you are so tired of feeling like you should be stronger.

I know you don’t think you are doing enough for your child and yet you are sick and tired of the therapy sessions and the doctors’ appointments. I know right now you want to give it all up. You want your kid to be “normal.” You want a redo. Your brain hurts just thinking about all the places you have to be tomorrow, you just want to give up.

Mama, I know you hurt. I know how alone and tired you feel. I know, because I’ve been there. In fact, I wasn’t sure I’d ever get out of “there.” I have uttered the words “It’s not fair” more times than I can count and, honestly, more times than I want to admit. I have screamed sounds at the top of my lungs that would make a lion scared in hopes that somewhere, someone would save me.

I’ve sat outside my child’s door and cried enough tears to fill a lake. I’ve hit my head against his door as he hits the other side more times than any parent should ever have to do.

I’ve been at the edge, the edge of losing my child, the edge of losing my other children, the edge of losing my marriage, my sanity… myself.

I’ve been there. More times than I really want to admit.

Here’s the thing, though. You can’t quit. You can’t give up. You aren’t allowed to.

Yeah, you read that right. You aren’t allowed to quit. You see, if you give up, you know deep down no one else will advocate for your child the way you do. You know no one will love your child the way you do. You know no one will pick you back up like you do.

You are stronger than you realize you are. You are already doing it. You are taking time for yourself, even if it’s just a short breather to turn off your mind and read something familiar. You are doing it. You are one strong mama! Now, its time to turn the corner, brush it off, and get back up.

Want to know a secret?

You’ve got this. No, you’ve more than got this. You, my friend, were born with what it takes to get through this and not give up! Today might be an ugly day. Heck, you might not remember the last pretty day, but I know you’ve got this.

Want to know the best part?

You are not alone. That’s right. I have sat in the exact same place in the hall you are sitting in now. I have stayed awake many nights worrying how I’d get through another day. I’ve dug deep down and wondered if I had what it takes to persevere and get my child the support he needs. I’ve been there and so have so many others.

I know that doesn’t make it easier right now, but I want you to know that you have a village out there waiting for you to find them. You have an army rooting for you and cheering you and your child on. You know why? They know what’s on the other side of this fight. They know it gets better. They know not all days feel this helpless.

They know because they have been in your shoes. They wanted to give up. They found their village, and their drive and they persevered.

Just like you, Mama.

Just like you!

Signed, A Tired Mama That’s Been in Your Shoes

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