Five things my daughter has taught me

Five things my daughter has taught me

I’ve heard people say that kids with special needs are sent to special parents. While I am sure it’s meant with kindness and I nod along politely as I get they’re probably trying to pay me a compliment, I simply don’t agree.

Instead, I firmly think that kids with special needs make their parents special. For each and every thing that we’ve helped Poss learn, she’s taught us at least that many in return.

It’s often been the blind leading the blind, with each of us trying to feel our way through this parenting gig and hoping we’ll be able to hold it together long enough to get Poss back into bed safely at the end of it.

Some days winning, just as often failing, but learning, getting up and trying again. And even if we didn’t want to, I’m not sure we have a choice.

She’s almost 10 and half now, although every day it feels more and more like she’s growing faster and faster; dragging us along with her as she powers ahead into the world. I hope she’ll take some of the things we’ve taught her with her as she does, but I know I’ll hold onto the things she’s taught me for far longer…

  • Persistance – Poss’ persistance to get what she wants in this world has always been single minded. Whether it’s been to only eat a certain food, or watch the same video again and again, or just keep trying to make friends; I can only sit back and watch in awe, knowing I would have given up long ago.
  • Tolerance – She gives people way more chances than they deserve. She’s taught me to forgive and try to be more understanding. Everyone is fighting a battle you can’t see.
  • Advocacy – Advocating for Poss isn’t a role I ever thought I’d have, but it’s one of my most important.
  • Beyond the box – In Poss’ world there isn’t even a box, let alone one to constrain her. She sees the world in ways I couldn’t even predict, but it brings me wonder and joy almost every time. Other times it just baffles me. But mostly joy.
  • Patience. I’m not a patient person. In any way shape or form. I’ll never understand why it’s a virtue. But Poss demands patience; repetition has been key to every gain she’s made. Funnily enough, you learn to be more patient when speaking in “this then that” phrases continuously for five years.

I could go on about unconditional love, but I wager all parents feel that. Intense joy, worry and fear, overwhelming pride – again, I know I’m not alone.

But these handful of things, so small when written down, but so much when I carry them with me; knowing that Poss has made me not only a better parent, but a better person.

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Comments

  1. Beautiful, touching and filled with love. You can feel it. Your words wrap around me like a favourite special blanket.

  2. Kathryn says:

    So true! I absolutely love your posts, you nail it every time! The only thing I’d add is an ability to find humour in the ridiculous…some days are much harder than others but every now and then I have to acknowledge the quirkiness and craziness and complete lack of dignity can be pretty amusing. K.x

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