It’s so hard for people to understand what special needs families are faced with on a daily basis. I tried to put just some of the daily challenges and choices I have to make, into words. My hope is that this will help people to gain perspective..
I’m blessed to have a very loving and supportive family but not everyone does.
The following is dedicated to all the special needs families of the world.
If you were to walk into my house at any given time, you would find many things. Among them, the floor covered with toys and the kitchen with a sink full of dirty dishes.
If you ventured into the basement you would see a mountain of dirty laundry patiently waiting to be washed. Look around some more and you would find unmade beds, stacks of unpaid bills and even some shut off notices.
Some people would look at this and judging me, say that this is a reflection of me as a person, a father or my ability to take care of my family.
To those people, I say thank you.
Why in the world would I thank someone for saying something like that?
The answer is both simple and complex all at the same time. While under different circumstances I would be insulted, hurt or even angered by those judgmental and thoughtless comments.
That being said, I’m a single father trying to raise three kids with Autism on my own. There are no words to express the level of challenge I’m facing every single day.
I’m always taking the kids to various therapies and to or from school.
I make sure they are fed (which is an enormous sensory related challenge), clothed (which is another sensory related challenge) and have as many of their unique special needs met as possible. I deal with depression, meltdowns, anxiety, ADHD, fragile health issues, nightmares, self-injury, sleepless nights, IEP’s and an unforgiving world.
I need to have priorities and these things are at the very top of the list.
That means everything else will inevitably take a back burner. It’s frankly, a matter of survival. It won’t always make sense to the rest of the world but I stand fast knowing that I’m doing everything within my power to keep my kids above water.