Anyone who truly knows me, recognizes I’m not one to repress my feelings about anything. I’m especially candid about the difficulties of parenthood.
Then, in our case, the addition of having a special needs child has caused me to become incredibly transparent.
At times, I’ve fallen victim to pitying myself and our life. Every outing comes with meltdowns, tantrums, and/or acts of aggression. Sometimes I know exactly what set our daughter off and other times I don’t have the slightest clue. Her sensory sensitivities play a huge part in this. She may have an unusual or intense reaction to certain sounds, smells, tastes, textures, lights and/or colors. This coupled with her limited vocabulary makes it hard to determine her needs.
Truthfully, my difficulties in parenting are minimal compared to Brynn’s adversities. Along with Autism Spectrum Disorder, she is developmentally delayed. Nothing comes easy for her. Things that appear simple for most children, are extremely trying.
Though, her physical challenges frustrate her at times, her emotional struggles and needs appear to be far more problematic. She is stricken with separation anxiety and is highly averse to transitions. Socially, she absolutely loves people, maybe a little too much. She has zero social boundaries or cues. She has a lot of love to give, which is a wonderful quality, but she can’t grasp not hugging and kissing everyone she meets.
The remarkable thing is, with all her challenges, she is a happy, sweet girl. Yes, she has some behavioral issues. Yes, most things are a struggle for her, but she finds happiness and joy amid her hardships. If she can do that, then who am I to ever pity myself?
As I’ve began to look at the positives of Autism, I’ve been able to embrace and celebrate our life.
With that said, let me share some of my favorite things about Brynn:
- Her strong capability to love
- Her concern for others
- Her observational skills
- Her love of music and taking comfort in us singing to her
- Her ability to retain information
- Her love of dresses
- Her tenacity and resilience (ok, this might be a love/hate relationship for me)
- Her acceptance of others
- Her lovely smile
- Her compassion
- Her loyalty