A Special Gift for Parents of Children with Special Needs: Perspective
The hardest part of raising a child is teaching them to ride bicycles.
A shaky child on a bicycle for the first time needs both support and freedom.
The realization that this is what the child
will always need can hit hard.
~ Sloan Wilson
Every now and then it’s a good idea to sit back and reflect a bit about our lives, our families and our children. Day-to-day we can get swept up in the stress, worry and anxiety or managing school demands, social struggles and our own work that we lose sight of the positive, the good and the joy that comes from being a parent. It takes a little effort to step back and get perspective on our children’s strengths, joys and charms.
Many of us often start the day arguing with children to get to school on time and end the day stressed out about homework and bedtime. There just doesn’t seem to be enough time to wistfully acknowledge all of the wonderful qualities our children bring into the world.
However, taking a moment to sit back and think about what is right with our children, rather than what is wrong is a powerful way to improve our mood and perspective on parenting. More and more we are learning through psychological research and experience that our thoughts are a powerful force in how happy and successful we are. Positive thoughts can bring us positive change, while negative thoughts are draining and can lead us to negative outcomes.
So come with me for a minute and let’s take two or three big steps back from our daily grind and think about our children from this perspective. Answer these questions to get a more positive thought pattern about your children and yourself as a parent.
What is your child good at?
What are their most endearing qualities?
What have they said lately that has made your heart melt?
What is your child’s most cherished object, favorite book, and favorite color?
When not worrying about school, how is your child’s mood and demeanor?
What makes your child a special and unique individual in the world? How can you nurture their precious soul?
What are you good at as a parent?
When your child struggles what do you do to support them(a hug or a pat can be just perfect, by the way)?
Can you see the bigger picture now? I hope your positive thoughts help you feel better about your child and your parenting. The next time you have a tough day with your child,you can refer back to this exercise to help you gain some perspective and remember all that is good about your child and yourself.