Am I Taking the Easy Way Out With My Special Needs Kid?
We make choices for our kids every day. But as the mother of a child with special needs
, I feel like the choices I face are weighted a bit more than they might be for others. But I don't really know that for sure. I'm just guessing.
I do know there are times when I decide something for my son simply because it seems like an easier choice. Easier not to sign up for Little League than to watch him struggle in the field and at bat. Easier to stay home than attend the birthday party at the bowling alley, where he might become overwhelmed and disruptive. Easier to opt out than to join in. And I have to wonder, who is it easier for—him or me?
It's not a hard question to answer. I know I am a good mom, but I often wonder why I'm not a better mom, a braver mom, a more-willing-to-give-it-a-try mom.
It's not that we don't participate. We do. It's just that we don't do as much as most of the families we know. And my awareness of that makes me feel inadequate sometimes. So when another mom asks if we've RSVP'd for the party, or signed up for Cub Scouts, I have this need to try and explain. But how do I explain something so deep and so personal, when all people really want to hear is yes or no?
I know my special-needs son deserves the chance to try, to put himself out there with other children and other families, but there are countless times when I don't give him the opportunity. There are times when I decide ahead of time that it's not the right moment, the right event or the right crowd. And I have to wonder, is what I'm doing the right thing at all?