Monday, November 16, 2009

Through their eyes

We took the boys to have their eyes examined today. Sam had his checked when he was a month old. The concern for him was due to his low birth weight, he may have retinopathy of prematurity. His exam at that time was very good and there were no signs of ROP. The doctor wanted another exam at 9 months. Our pediatrician said it was a good idea to have Dean examined too.

The waiting room was full. There were children with different abilities and special needs. I spoke to a woman who has a daughter with a neurological condition. Megan is confined to a chair. When her mom spoke to her about going to Starbucks way too much, she responded with smiles and laughs. It was so sweet. I was saddened for this mom and all parents who much adjust their way of thinking and way of living in order to give their children the best possible life. Then it occurred to me that children in general have that affect on people. A parent has to adjust their life and way of thinking to give their children the best life so they can thrive and be happy. We are just given hardships in different forms.

I never thought of myself as a loving individual or particularly fond of children. But I looked at these kids and felt such a surge in my heart. These parents are doing the best they can.

As I spoke to Megan's mom, I asked about where they came from. She spoke of the difficult time she was having with the school district. School systems do not look at case by case, they apply rules across the board. And when a parent has to pull a child out of school for treatment, how can that be unexcused? If a child needs physical therapy, why would that count against them in their school records?

I spoke about the difficulties we were having with sleeping through the night. I complained that Sam was such a mama's boy and that he had severe separation anxiety. I realized after the boy's exams were done that I had nothing to complain about. How can I compare sleepless nights with a lifelong condition? My kids will grow out of it but special needs kids don't grow of it.

I am so blessed to have our boys. They are healthy, they are happy and they are thriving. Would I have been strong enough to deal with a child with special needs? I don't know. But I look at special needs parents and am full of respect for their ability to make it work. I will think twice before I talk about hardships with my twins with other parents.

I like this site. It is so inspirational and has a wealth of information.