Every parent story is different
One of the most important and loved people in my life became a first time parent. I was happy and excited for the new chapter in their life.
What we learned, very quickly after the baby was born , were the long lasting challenges the parent and the baby would be facing for life. Everything I thought I knew about parenting, that I was eager to teach and share, went out of the window.
TIPS on becoming a life long support and cheerleader for special needs children's parents
Realization: Their journey as a parent was something I had no clue about. The first few months were unbearable pain of realization that we will all be living a different kind of normal.
You will need to educate yourself : There will be stigma and unanswered questions around the baby's health.
You will make a new normal : There won't be the kind of firsts we expected, but we will have to make new accommodations.
Celebrate with kindness and sensitivity: Their milestone accomplishments during the developing years would look nothing like my children.
Become better humans: We would learn new behavior patterns, unlearn old expectations, develop a higher sense of empathy and emotional availability for the child.
Stick together: We will figure this out, together.
Time will teach us to celebrate: 7 years later we are learning and celebrating our gift.
Gratitude is essential:I learned to thank Allah Subhanahu Wa Tala for allowing me to realize and understand what it meant to truly be an empathetic human being.
Practice the Sunnah of compassion and mercy: I was given a chance to practice the Sunnah of compassion and mercy, not just for my children but for this special child in our lives.
Educate yourself and the people around you: I learned quickly how cruel the world is towards something that doesn't seem normal, and so through trial and error learned the correct terminology to address sensitive topics, educate myself and people in my surrounding.
Humility: I came to respect each and every parent who have been gifted by Allah Subhanahu Wa Tala with special needs children.
It's ok to be scared: I don't romanticize their struggles, I honestly am scared of living a life not knowing what tomorrow will bring for them and their children.
Prayer is the key: But I pray, I pray sincerely and with conviction for miracles. the kind of miracles that defy our human intellect and science. The miracles that speak volumes about the parents's sacrifices and patience.
It's a life long learning process: I learned over time, the coping mechanisms of being around such a family.
Learn and practice respectful, unbiased ways: I taught myself and my children the appropriate language tools we needed to address and communicate in.
Do not give up on yourself or your loved ones: It's and ongoing learning experience, and we are ready to take on the challenge Alhamdulilallah.
It is easier to say nice things, write ideas but the brave souls are the ones that come forward and actually hold hands. They make the effort to become uncomfortable, because they understand that the parent is going through a far mor
e complex challenge than themselves. All you have to do is show up, physically , mentally and emotionally. Let us honestly ask ourselves how many of us can actually do that?