As I write this, it’s Thanksgiving Eve in my country; a time to stop, reflect and dig deep for something to be thankful for. As parents of special needs children, we truly have much to be thankful for. Sure, our concept of “normal” does not reflect what our surrounding culture deems “typical,” but that doesn’t make our experience any less, does it?
Over the years I’ve found many things raising a special needs daughter (Autism Spectrum) has made me uniquely thankful for. (I’m sure you have your list, too, and I would absolutely love to read it!) As we’re all swamped with packing, driving, cooking, baking, and keeping the peace (or worrying about how to create peace), this is brief.
Raising a daughter on the Autism Spectrum has…
1) forced me to open my mind wide and redefine, even challenge, the concept of “normal.”
2) taught me that the goals for my family are unique, and that is necessary and good.
3) made me stronger and more adept at identifying short sighted individuals, the close minded, and bullies – and I now have the foresight move on from them.
4) there are many ways to view life, and each view is profound and beautiful.
5) special interests are a powerful force that, when used for good, change the world for the better.
6) busted so many myths about those with autism, such as the supposed inability to have empathy (my daughter has a ginormous heart!)
7) introduced me to the most amazing people all over the globe whether on the spectrum or not!
And for all of these things, I am truly thankful.
Wishing you a wonderful Thanksgiving! I truly am thankful for each and every one of you!