Several of you have asked “How is Jack doing in his new school?” And he is doing well. He’s making friends, and is learning to trust the staff there. He’s riding the bus and LOVING it and the support staff that rides with him. Of course he still has Autism. So no matter where he is learning, home… public school, small school, on the bus… certain things will still remain a struggle. We are working with his teachers to help figure out the best things that will help him thrive and learn.
We, as his parents (and Dan’s parents too) are struggling though. This might be one of the hardest day to day things I’ve had to encounter. I keep reading stuff and sure I learn things… but it’s almost like they don’t apply to the 100 little parenting moments during the day when we feel like utter failures because we don’t understand HOW to capture our son’s heart, how to communicate to him, or what we can do to help him thrive in our family. Because right now…. EVERY day is becoming a freaking struggle where we tend to end up losing our $#!*. He has moments when I adore and am so grateful for the uniqueness and giftings he has…where almost nothing really is that different from the uniqueness found in his siblings, and then others, where I want to just yell at the Autism… “WHERE IS MY SON????”. It feels like it just keeps getting harder and harder to relate, understand, respond, parent him.
Ya’ll, we don’t have time as a family of six (two with down syndrome) with limited funds to create some sensory room for him, to greatly alter his diet, to plan for him to have something to do every minute of the day, to do pressure points 6 times a day, or to cater our whole lives around this. We just can’t. (At least, not right now, we have to grow in that capacity and that will take time.)But we just HAVE to somehow learn (and teach others) where we need to change and where he needs to and how we can help him to in those areas.
I feel like each day is a guessing game for what will work and have him not talk like a baby, not to script rudely, not leave his school classroom, not hit his siblings or hurt their feelings as if it were a game, to not disrespect the heck out of every adult who loves him and tries to parent him, or not to go absolutely haywire anytime the household is humming along peacefully, having dinner, or just when he feels like it.
You know that show called the Super Nanny? I feel like we need one that will come stay here and SHOW us what to do with him and for him. Right now, we are feeling pretty low and at a loss in our parenting/grandparenting skills when it comes to our incredible son.
If any of you have any helpful information that is specific to parenting and inclusion into typical family life, feel free to pass along any VERY PRACTICAL articles, books, videos that you have found helpful in just everyday parenting your child and living as a thriving family together? Especially if it applies to bigger larger families where everyone can be on the same page. Again, I’ve read a lot but so much just hasn’t applied practically in the hundreds of little moments every day.
I know many of you guys are praying for us and LOVE our kiddos. We adore them too. We know that Jack is meant to be in our family and that God’s good purposes are FOR him and knew his story when he was knitted in his mama’s womb. And we want to honor God in how we parent him.