I have 2 beautiful boys. A 20-year-old in college, who has recently moved back home to attend a nearby school, and our son with special health care needs who is 14 and struggling through every second that puberty seems to throw at him.
It has been a very difficult 3-4 months in our household, and "stressful" doesn't even come close to accurately describing the situation.
We always made sure through every year with our oldest that myself or my husband were at every event that he participated in, even though he had a sibling with special health care needs. This was not always an easy task, as our oldest was in everything; football, baseball, basketball, Boy Scouts, band - you name it, he was in it, plus all the academic activities and events we attended.
During these past few months, the conversation I had been dreading for years finally surfaced. "Mom, why do you think Jac is still here? He seems like he hurts, we can't help him. He screams, we can't help him. Why?"
How does a parent answer the very questions that they sometimes wonder themselves?
I tried very hard to put my thoughts and words together slowly and carefully. I explained to my oldest son that I understood what he was saying and with all the screaming that his brother was doing lately, I think it is only natural for all of us to wonder the exact same thing.
But in my heart of hearts, deep down inside, I truly believe Jac is here to make us a better family, make us appreciate the good moments and totally learn what unconditional love is. Yes, the bad times are bad but man oh man does it ever make you appreciate the good times.
Funny how after my talk with our oldest, he seems more patient with his brother. I don't know why. Maybe it's by pure accident, but maybe he realized what I have realized: Kids like Jac are here to be loved. No matter how hard the days are, Jac is ours and we love him to infinity and beyond!!!
You can find helpful hints under Family Support – Navigating Daily Life on this website.
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If you have a child with a disability, I am sure you know that it takes a village to help raise a kiddo with special health care needs.