Do you ever wonder how different this journey would be for you and your child with special needs if interactions with medical professionals and therapists weren’t so focused on your child’s limitations? How different your child's life experience would be if he was seen, heard, appreciated and loved here and now, rather than be made to feel like he wasn't enough – time and time again. Do you ever wonder how different the journey would be for you, if there were balance between the good news and the bad news.
As a parent to a child with Atypical Rett Syndrome, we have experienced the never-ending appointments about the bad news, which early on, only dragged us down all the more, leaving us feeling helpless, confused and defeated. Not knowing any better, not being trained in the medical profession, not knowing where to start on this new path, what choice did we have then but to listen and believe those telling us that our child was flawed, as though different was a bad thing. That our child would never have a normal life, as if normal meant happiness. That our child would completely change our life's trajectory to one filled with challenges and burden, as though there would be no joy in this new chapter of our lives. All this information pushing us into deeper and deeper pain, circling in a never ending loop of negativity. What choice did we have, in this vulnerable state, but to follow every recommendation presented to us, to listen to every word as truth, fully trusting in the system, incapable of seeing the silver lining.
A Lack of Consciousness
Unconscious are the professionals that share their judgments and opinions with parents without fully understanding what this journey is about; without fully understanding the psychological impact of their words, tone, and facial expression; without fully comprehending that their assumptions, preparing us for the worst, only leave us feeling fearful and powerless. Unconscious are those that dump all of the bad news on us, without giving us the proper support to navigate this journey in a positive way.
How and what information is shared with parents early on can completely shift a family's trajectory; their interpretation and perception of what is shared and how it is shared has a direct impact on what happens next in their own healing, and on their child's on-going development. Parents are left to process this painful news, unsupported, confused and alone. Little attention is paid to the parent's healing process, little coaching is offered as to how to move through this new chapter in a positive way, when in fact, the parents are the ones that will have the biggest impact of all on their child's ability to reach their full potential, whatever that may be.
The moment our children are diagnosed, identified as developmentally delayed, or judged as 'different', we are made to feel like this is the worst day of our lives, when in truth - it really doesn't have to be this way at all.
The truth, is that medical professionals are not to blame – their intentions are to help our children as best they can with the information that is available to them. They have been conditioned and trained to think the way they do, they have been taught to believe in and transmit their limiting beliefs about who or what our children are meant to be in this life. How can we expect them to see our children in their true essence when most people have been conditioned to see our children just as they do.
What if someone had told you at the very start of your journey, that having a child with special needs was going to bring incredible transformation into your home and family, that it was an opportunity for you to access the truth about life and love in an accelerated form, that it would allow you to grow and evolve into the best version of yourself. What if they told you that having a child with special needs would give you access to the roadmap to enlightenment and freedom? What if someone could show you the way from the very start? Wouldn’t you find the news less painful? Wouldn’t it give you hope in some way? Wouldn’t you be curious about the possibilities?
Unfortunately, society's perception of what it means to have a child with special needs moves us directly into pain and suffering the moment we find out our child is different. Those around us, at home, in the school system and in the medical system, only support these beliefs by feeling sorry for us.
How misinformed are they all about what these kids are here to teach us, completely un-awakened to our children's purpose and reason for being.
Our Children with Special Needs Have Great Purpose
Our children with special needs force us to heal from our attachment to normalcy, to perfection, to acceptance, to a false image of success and beauty. They open our eyes to a simpler, more meaningful life.
Within each of these heart centered beings is the roadmap to our happiest, most fulfilled life - freed from conditioning, limiting beliefs and childhood wounds. Freed from old programming. Freed from a false sense of self.
If the conversation about your child had started with both the good and the bad news, do you think you would have suffered less? Do you believe it would have greatly changed your child’s experience in this world, from one of lack and unworthiness, to one of freedom, peace and love?
How can we expect our children to reach their full potential in a society that limits them by imposing their beliefs on them about what they are meant to become? How can they explore what is unique about them if we are constantly forcing them into therapies that are trying to make them like everyone else? How does this support them in being who they are? In shining their unique light? In changing the the world one heart at a time.
Our society places so much importance on form – the outer world of appearance, things, and image – that they are incapable of seeing that the form itself is a false representation of self.
Our children with special needs naturally radiate an abundance of love. Their hearts are so pure, that they don’t engage in drama and judgment, but rather promote kindness, acceptance and inclusiveness. If beauty were measured by the energy radiating from people's hearts, children with special needs would be the most beautiful humans on earth.
We, are in many ways, in more pain and suffering than they are – the guilt, shame, and judgment we impose on ourselves and others, the heavy emotional baggage we carry from our childhood, the feelings of lack and unworthiness, the inability to love ourselves completely and wholeheartedly – all contribute to our pain, to our suffering.
Unless you are willing to free yourself from an old way of being and seeing, you will struggle on this journey. You have been given a great opportunity - to free yourself from all that is holding you back, from all that us keeping you in suffering.
You see, our children have been misjudged – they are resilient, wise and strong. They are powerful beams of light. They are our teachers. They are unconditional love. They are here to be themselves, in their imperfect form to teach us that none of it matters. They are here to teach us that what truly matters is what is inside. What needs to be cultivated is the cocoon within us all, so that we can emerge as the beautiful butterfly. Only then will we truly see everyone, including ourselves, with the eyes of love.
Be The Change
If you knew from day one, that your child was here to be different, to change you and those around you, to free you from your own pain, would you try to fix them? Would you try to make them more like you? Or would you embrace every ounce of who they are?
What your child needs most is to be seen, heard and loved just as they are, here and now, unconditionally. They need you to tune into them and follow their lead about how they are meant to reach their full potential, whatever that means. They need you to empower them and trust in them. They need you to help them shine their light so that they can share their magnificent hearts with all of those around them. You were chosen to advocate for them. To help society see them just as you do. Our children with special needs show us the way - they show us the true meaning of life.
Next time you are are reminded of what your child can't do, remember that these are details based in form, and that they have no weight on your child's unique qualities, incredible resilience and strength, and heart radiance.
Remember that what we see, not everyone sees, but the more of us open our eyes to see it, the bigger the impact when we come together to advocate for our special needs children and show the world that they too, have great purpose.