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A Note to Parents of Special Needs Kids

A Note to Parents of Special Needs Kids

Short and sweet.

Author: Mother Cusser/Thursday, July 24, 2014/Categories: Cussing

Waiting in line to pick kids up from camp yesterday, I was listening to other Moms in front of me talk about their kids, "camp has been fun" blah blah "my son is so happy here" blah blah.  I disregard their comments and turn inward. 

I lose myself in my own mind thinking about my own stresses.  Have to be on time for football. Have to have meals/water/equip/etc.  What about work?  How can I better manage personal relationships?  And don’t forget money. That’s always in there.  OMG school starts soon.  How will middle school be? What about the other boys? Will they develop friendships? Will they be happy?  What can I do to ensure this will happen? How can I control the situations to get the most positive outcome?  Always trying to be in control brings so much anxiety.   Feeling sorry for myself. I'm SO STRESSED. I’M SO TIRED.  I JUST WANT TO GO RIDE MY HORSE FOR A FEW HOURS. IS THAT SO WRONG??

The bus pulls up. 

A special needs boy gets off the bus.  He’s a tall, lanky teenager with shaggy dark hair that is falling in his eyes.  He can’t quite hold his head upright.  His hands are twisted in awkward positions. His feet cross over each other as he shuffles over to the Mom who is standing in the front of the line. 

She has a huge smile on her face and an arm outstretched to grab him.  She welcomes him and asks him if he had a good time?

He sings his answer – a kind of high pitched “oh” sound that lasts about four seconds.  I realize that this boy has no language whatsoever.

She smiles in response telling him she can tell that he’s quite happy!

But how does she know?

He cannot give her a big hug.  He cannot tell her about his wonderful day.  He can only sing to her.

I am floored.  I am floored at my ego-centric self. 

Now here come my boys.  As they get off the bus I count them. 1, 2, 3, 4 – all here.  And all begin talking at the same time to explain what their days were like and sharing “yo momma” jokes they learned from the boy counselors at camp and are we eating in the car before football?  Can I ride shotgun? 

I marvel at their perfect heads, hands and feet. Their perfect messy hair.  Their perfect wrinkled clothes. 

Their perfect voices.

And I take a deep breath and make myself live in the moment with them. Not in my own busy mind. But just living right there and then, in their world. 

Feeling so grateful, honored and overjoyed to be a part of it.

How did I get so lucky?

GAWD knows it hasn’t been an easy road.  But who cares? 

If I look at the road that some of those Moms have been on and will continue to be on – I have nothing to complain about. 

Only things to celebrate.

I want to thank the parents of special needs kids. For being brave and strong.  For not giving up.  For loving fiercely.  For understanding their children. For listening to their unique songs.

And for reminding me how good I’ve got it.  I know that’s not your mission, but it’s a gift you gave to me yesterday and I want to tell you from the depths of my heart, thank you. 

Thank you for reminding me to listen to my children sing.

Number of views (5784)/Comments (12)

12 comments on article "A Note to Parents of Special Needs Kids "


Brenda Carr

7/24/2014 12:59 PM

Thank you Julie! My daughter is the mother to two beautiful boys with Special needs. One with ADHD and one with Autism with Apraxia of speech. She hardly has time to breathe because all of her energy goes into each of these beautiful boys. They are super intelligent. In fact, both have tested with extremely high IQ's and their creativeness is unstoppable. I wish everyone would look at these children in Aww instead of sorrow. They bring a different perspective to life and their enthusiasm is just as overflowing and boundless as any other child. They love with every ounce of their being but may not express it as others think they should. We are ALL different.



7/24/2014 1:07 PM

This is truth, MC. Good to be reminded to take a breath, live in the moment, and count the many blessings we have! You're on to something special! Keep up the good work! Oh, and you really should go ride your horse for a few hours too!



7/24/2014 2:05 PM

Beautifully written Blog! It brought tears to my eyes.



7/24/2014 6:00 PM

Wow! Can you be any more insensitive? As if, since your kids don't have a special need, you're more lucky/blessed than the parents of children with special needs! Maybe, just maybe... those of us with special needs children are BEYOND grateful for our AMAZING children and DON'T sit around judging other people's kids and other parents! WOW! I'm just appalled by this!



7/25/2014 2:45 PM

I did not find the blog insensitive...it is simply a good example of the context of experience.....if I judge what she says then I fall into the same trap. The reality is perspective ....the child that she is viewing as special needs may or may not be the perfect one, with the perfect head....it is hard to decide what perfect is, but it is all context. Until someone walks a mile in anothers shoes...which is what this writer is attempting to do, and at the same time she is inexperienced in this world .... we cannot begin to understand. If we would stop snapping at each other.....and listen and try....as this writer is attempting to do the world would indeed be a whole lot more peaceful. When we jump to defend out tribe and context and judge others...that is when the less peaceful avenue starts...



7/25/2014 5:45 PM

In my sons early diagnosis I might have gone defensive or shared some of Helens thoughts, that it was insensitive but as I grow and accept my sons differences I am better able to balance and see this mom really is just saying "thank you for opening my eyes" in ways having my son has opened mine very wide, some to things that are quite pleasant and others to things that emotionally drain a person. Either way I have one child who does not have special needs and one with and I am glad I have both of them, they are both special in different ways in my eyes and I hope the writer really does take notes on all those small differences in her own children, it will only help her bond more with her kids. It's often we don't live in the moment when we should, I'm glad she was able to stop and smile and obviously get a feeling of warmth from that mom and sons interaction and I hope that is what happens when I am out with my son too!



7/25/2014 9:54 PM

All I can say is, really?


Cheryl Schalk

7/26/2014 12:22 PM

This is an interesting piece. You see a mom who is giving her son all of her attention and obviously has a close connection to him. But then you turned it around and made it all about you and your perfect kids and how lucky you are and the work "blessed" which is what we as parents of special needs kids hear all the time and hate. The boy and his mother do not exist to make you feel better about yourself. I am sure by the time you get to all the football games etc., you will have forgotten about the lovely scene you just witnessed.


Mother Cusser

7/28/2014 9:18 AM

Never used the word, "blessed."

Interesting how that got thrown in there by some of the readers.



7/28/2014 8:15 PM

I have a special needs child and can see it both ways!



7/28/2014 10:40 PM

Mother Cusser:

I am a mother of a special needs child. My 16 year old daughter has Down Syndrome. I take no offense to your article in any way. I found it quite inspiring and beautiful. Thank you for sharing.

All children are blessings, regardless of their abilities or lack thereof. In my opinion, I have been more blessed to have a special needs child. She is the gift that keeps giving with her pure and childlike spirit.

For everyone who has something hateful to say in response, that is exactly what it is: hate. Nothing you can say or do can change a person's hateful, bitter, or judgemental heart. I hope their ignorance won't prevent you from continuing to write. You have a gift for it. :)


Mother Cusser

7/29/2014 5:39 AM

Krystia -

Thank you. That was a very cool thing to share and a welcome compliment to my work. It's appreciated and while I don't like that people think there was another motive to this piece, I realize that the more readers I have means the floor is open to those who disagree. It's the nature of the beast.

But truly it is comments like yours and others on this page and my MC facebook page that inspire me to continue writing.

Thank you for taking the time to stop by here and say what you did.


Mother Cusser

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