To tap into that which is innate within our differently abled children, we must first clear away the fog that holds us back from fully embracing and loving ourselves – the light and the shadow.
We must learn to accept who we are, without the constant need for validation. We must gain the confidence to express our truth without guilt or shame. We must find the power within to be seen, to be vulnerable, to be authentic. We must invest in the exploration and discovery of our own unique gifts and abilities.
Not an easy task, right?! It's a lifelong process. It's the road less travelled. However, it’s an essential part of having the capacity to fully support our differently abled kiddos if our hope and desire is to guide them towards their highest innate potential. All it takes is for you to commit to the process, not the destination.
You see, without the capacity to see and accept yourself, to love and value yourself, it is nearly impossible for you to connect with and attune to your child's true essence, to see them in their magnificence, to tap into their uniqueness, to feel the purity of their heart here and now. Your view of them will always be tainted by your own feelings of lack and unworthiness, by your own fears and insecurities.
Know that this is part of the journey. I am right there with you. I've been there.
In the first two years of my daughter's life, I was so consumed with my need to fix her, to rush her development, to get her to walk, to heal her, to be her savior, to help her be part of this world - that I failed to see just how absolutely perfect she was. I failed to enjoy her, connect with her, and learn from her with love and curiosity. I failed to see that she was never meant to be part of this world as a member of the herd. I failed to see that she was so much more than that. That her presence would transform those around her. That her life would change the lives of many.
So, what does it mean to clear the fog and do the inner work?
Clearing away the fog speaks to removing the layers of conditioning, limiting beliefs, and expectations that life has piled onto us since childhood. It speaks to doing our inner work as a way to reconnect with our lost selves. The part of us we dimmed to fit in, to be loved, to be seen. You see, early on, most of us created a false self as a way to be accepted in this world, as a way to be loved and validated by our parents, and with that, came deep feelings of unworthiness, a lack of self love, and a disconnection from our inner channel – our inner knowing, our inner voice, our authentic self.
To be seen, heard and valued, we were expected to perform, achieve, and do better, we were expected to do more, in some cases we were asked to be something other than who we were, show interest in things that didn't match our strengths or interests, which ultimately led us to chase, time and time again, after a feeling of being enough. This doesn't mean our parents and those around us were mal-intentioned, on the contrary, in many cases they felt they were doing what was best for us - as we often believe it is best to try to help our kids fit into life, as a way of protecting them, when in fact we are protecting ourselves.
We grew up in a world that values success, physical appearance and financial abundance. We grew up being taught that these things were essential to finding happiness – when in fact, they are not.
Anything based in the outer world, all that is outside of ourselves, cannot lead us to true happiness. True joy and fulfillment are felt from within, they are felt when we love ourselves; when we feel at peace; when we see life from the lens of abundance, not lack; when we are able to share with life our unique gifts; when can be of service to humanity in some way. This, is in many ways what our differently abled children are here to teach us.
As much as it may be hard to believe for some, our differently abled children are here to show us the path out of suffering, and into true joy and abundance, true fulfillment from within; but to get there, we must be willing to unlearn what we have been taught about the meaning of life. We must be willing to leave what we've been told to believe about this journey with our differently abled children behind, so to be able to embrace a new way of navigating on this path.
The fact that our children cannot be molded into members of the herd IS the gift.
You see, when we are incapable of accepting our children as they are, it means that on a deeper level, we are incapable of accepting ourselves. Our children mirror back to us our deepest insecurities, fears, and feelings of unworthiness. They bring back to life wounds we thought we’d buried.
What we are not told is that our differently abled children show us what we need to heal, not only to be a better parent to them, to show up for them in the way they need us to, to truly see them in their absolute unique magnificence, and support them on their path, but also to reach our own inner peace, freedom and joy. The less we are able to mold our child to fit in and be who we want them to be, as we were molded and shaped by our parents and society, the more triggered we are, and thus the more opportunity there is for major growth and transformation.
THIS is your opportunity to listen to what life is showing you so that you can access your best life – this experience with your child, although incredibly challenging, is the door to freedom from within. It is the door to self love. This my friends, is the true meaning of life.
As a mom to a daughter on the severe end of Atypical Rett Syndrome, I can absolutely empathize with your struggles on this journey. It is not easy. But there is a way out of suffering and into your best place. I am a true testament to this - I have never been more radiant and happy than I am now, over seven years into this journey. It doesn’t mean life doesn’t throw me a curve ball here and there to push me further, it doesn’t mean that I will never be sad again, but it does mean that I am resilient, powerful and strong. It does mean that my struggles feel much lighter. It does mean that I can bounce back rapidly from difficult life circumstances and situations. It does mean that I see and love myself and feel blessed to have the ability to share something meaningful with life. And most of all, it means that I have the great privilege to live life through the heart lens.
Everything you need to be your best self, and to be the best parent to your differently abled child is within you. Let your intuition guide you towards what is meant to help you on your path.
This journey towards supporting your child to express their highest innate potential – it starts with you.