Extreme Parenting. What a great way to describe parents of children with special needs and what we do day in and day out. We will go to any and every extreme to give our children what they need. It could mean staying up for 24-hour care giving shifts day after day; traveling to hospital stays, doctor appointments, therapy; carrying out research and making life and death decisions; maintaining endless patience helping our children learn a new skill; accepting that today is not what we might have expected it to be; developing new priorities.
Elizabeth Aquino, writer and mom caring for a special needs child, posed this question:
Knowing what I know now, what might I have told myself on the day of my child’s diagnosis?
She took this idea and developed it into The Extreme Parenting Video Project. This is a video that everyone must see, not just "extreme parents". But for the "extreme parents" who watch it, you are in for a few moments that will inspire you for a long time to come. This beautiful and insightful video will allow you to pause. You will remember that what you do is an adventure beyond anything you might once have imagined and you will know that you are not alone.
I encourage you to take a few minutes (about 3 ½ minutes in length) right now to view it. You will be comforted, soothed, and energized all in one.
What might I have told myself on the day of Evan’s diagnosis?
I imagine the person I am now, eight years later, stepping into the hospital room of the young and bewildered mother I was on the day Evan was born. I might say to myself:
“You can do this and you will do it well. Take one step, and then another. Stop to rest when you need to. You are going to become stronger than you ever imagined. This little boy will be your Ambassador of Joy and he will teach you how precious life really is.”
What would you have said? I would love to know. Post your words in a comment below.