Sunday, October 26, 2014

I Don't Expect You To Understand Why I Parent The Way I Do



Being the parent of children with special needs, our style and means of parenting are quite different than most parents. There are big reasons why we do the things we do, expect the things we expect, and redirect the way we redirect:

My son’s coach meant well. He really did. His fatherly instincts told him to comfort my son and try to remedy the situation by loaning him his gloves. The temperatures at game time were a brisk 30 degrees. The sun was up, but slow to melt the frost that fell in the early morning hours when it was the coldest. My son stood on the sideline shivering, crying, snot running down his upper lip, and looking as if he were close to death.

I stood on the opposite sideline, glaring at him as he played up his sob story, feeling no sympathy.

In fact, through the fumes that clearly radiated from my face I reflected back on the night before, when I was digging out knit caps and gloves in preparation for his game. Because I’m a college-educated person I paid attention to the evening weather report (which a kindergartener could do). I listened when the reporter said, matter-of-factly, that the next morning would be below normal. He even went as far as to say, “If your son or daughter is playing soccer, football or fall baseball, you will want to dress them warm!” Imagine that!

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