I Am That Parent
I am that parent. The one I never wanted to be. The mama bear of a child with extra special needs and I wonder how I got here. How did I become the squeaky wheel who doesn’t want the grease, or at least extra grease? I just want enough grease to move through the day like anyone else. I can not help it that one of my bicycles is exceptional and requires more grease than the average bike. I’m not really talking about my bike, poor old rusted thing left in the rain. It does need grease but that is my fault and my fault alone, inattention and neglect have rusted its’ wheels. I’m really talking about my children, my four kids, my precious Amos.
Yes, with the gift of Amos, the special needs mother heart swallowed my old self. Insanity. That is a word that describes the mind of a mother with a child who has extra special needs. Full of heart, love, Mama Bear in the truest sense of the word but cuckoo for cocoa puffs. Perhaps it is just me but enough newfound and a few old friends have ascertained my porcupine tenderness and agreed that they too, feel incredibly sensitive towards their cubs. They reassure me in my questioning the feelings I have; perhaps I bring them needed reassurance too.
It has to be okay to acknowledge our reality. If not that, then what are we left with? A shell of a soul that pretends the world doesn’t throw foul balls. I’ve never been a great batter but catching a foul ball feels like fate to me, the good kind usually but not always. I get through the day minute by minute and hour by hour and some days are better or easier or more fun than others. My pondering likely no different from the thoughts of most any parent, I would think.
The difference is that I am aware of each second, minute and hour. I’m that parent that is always aware of what may be coming next and preparing myself for the next step. My guard is never down. Never and that makes for an unusual mental state, one that leaves you too keenly aware and nearly wincing from all that is vivid and swirling around you. It also leaves me feeling like a third person observing my own life through the eyes of others. Does that make sense? Sometimes I sit, Amos in my lap, and we are quietly still as the world moves around us in slow motion and we sit in our cocoon removed from the place we carefully observe.
I am that parent now. I was never the outsider type so the bird eye’s view quite draws me in as I have always relished being in the middle of life’s circus. To sit now on the outskirts and observe the world where I once spun, is an amazing sense of perspective. The position I never would have sought, but has been so beautiful. It really has and without my Amos, I would have never taken a moment to glimpse the place where I dwelled, once a marionette, to my now trained eagle eye. The circle I could no longer could call my own, yet my view was widened into a larger sphere and thus, I never longed to return. Life is not charting our own paths but following the trajectory that fate lobs to each and everyone of us, especially the parents of those children who are diamonds in the rough.