Mother’s Day – what no one tells you about if you’re a special needs mum

by | May 19, 2023

Mother’s Day recently came and went.  It’s a day that I love to relish.  I love having the kids around and enjoying all their homemade cards and them making breakfast for me in bed, albeit with help from their dad.  I love seeing the smiles on their faces when I tell them how much I love their artwork and seeing the pride and joy in their faces when I tell them that.

I love that feeling that I get, to relish that I am indeed a mother.  Something that I have wanted for a very long time.  I remember when I was little, knowing to my core that I would one day become a mum and have children of my own.  I would watch as they grow and mature, play their make-believe games, and get them to help me make cupcakes.

But Mother’s Day these days can sometimes be a trigger.  A trigger for all the things that maybe I did wrong.  The questions arise, did I do something to cause his autism?  Was it my fault.  How can I turn back the clock?  To choose again, to better understand how I could have done this thing called life in a better way.

But then I remind myself that this beautiful soul was given to me so that I could learn.  Learn how far I could be stretched before I was broken.  Learn what true grit and resilience looked like.  Having a mindset of never giving up and choosing to see the glass as half full.  I choose to look at this child that is just getting his words now and I choose to see how brilliant his mind works.  How he problem solves, how he creates his train tracks and how he can repeat something to me in a conversation from a movie in perfect context.

This life of mine has seen more twists and turns than most typical people’s lives have ever seen.  The ups and the down’s are relentless.  The zig’s, the zags and happiness and the downright desperation.  I have felt it all and I am sure you have too.  But you are not alone.  If, on Mother’s Day, you were also tainted with a little bit of sadness.  I get you.  I hear you.  I see you.  You are not alone.

Being a mum is hard.  Now throw an autism diagnosis into the mix and its beyond hard.  It seems impossible.  But I’m here to tell you that it can still be beautiful and joyous and wonderful.  Will there be times that you’ll want to throw in the towel.  Almost every day.  But seeing that one simple gain that your child will make will push all the heartache away.  That one simple gain will shine so deeply that you won’t be able to see, feel or hear any of the pain.

Let us be reminded everyday that, even though it can be ridiculously hard, you get to be their mum.  You get to show up and be present and share in their wins.  You get to kiss them goodnight every night.  You get to help them on this journey.  Are you choosing to see the cup as half empty or half full?  Its your choice.  How do you choose?

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