We are going to see Parenting from a different angle. Parenting is a great thing which would never be replaced any other especially motherhood is amazing.
Though mother is indeed to everyone like us, do you know how is it for a special needs child?
How powerful a mother should be while taking care of her special needs child?
Yeah it’s a great thing, right?
Special Needs Parenting:
Now we are going to see about the discussion which I had with such a mother, Chesta Jain from backpackersmom.com who is an awesome mother, best marketer and also a wonderful mentor for women.
She had opened up about her daughter who is a special needs child and also explained how the parents should give Guidance and Counselling for Children with Special Needs.
Contents of the Discussion:
Here are the topics which we discussed with Chesta.
- Mother of Special Needs Child
- How is your Life different being a Parent of Special Needs Child?
- Is it too much Responsibility for handling a Special Needs Child?
- How can a parent come out from the stress they get after knowing their child has some special needs?
- How do you motivate your Child?
- How do you manage your time for Work, Self and Child?
1. Mother of Special Needs Child
My daughter is seven years old now and she is born with one of the rare disorders in the world.
Life is amazing with her, it is although challenging but we find our ways.
2. How is your Life different being a Parent of Special Needs Child?
Every mother has a unique journey, be it special needs or not. No difference in that but having said that, you are not prepared for this unexpected thing.
So you have to do a lot of research, work and talk to different kinds of people, need to meet Doctors, Therapists, and the list goes on.
After doing all kinds of iterations, then you need to find out the plan that suits you. It takes a lot of time to reach a conclusion like, this is something which is helping me out and this is the plan which is working out for me, for my family and for my child.
So it is definitely different and life has to be different for everyone and why need to have a boring life.
3. Is it too much Responsibility for handling a Special Needs Child?
Being a mother itself has a lot of responsibilities and every parent has a lot of responsibilities and it’s upon you to decide how much responsibility you want to take.
Like what is your goal for you?, what is your goal for your child? Accordingly you have to find out your responsibilities.
Sometimes you need to delegate some responsibilities about your child or related to your home but these kinds of responsibilities would be different from any other mother but as a mother, we all are having responsibilities.
4. How can a parent come out from the stress they get after knowing their child has some special needs?
When you come to know something about your child, it does come as a shock because you are not started, you are not prepared for it, what to do next, we don’t know anything about it but it takes time, you get into a routine, you have to go to meet different doctors, you have to try to understand from different parents, you meet therapist, you take regular classes, your work schedule gets changed, your priorities gets changed and accordingly you can find out later on what works best for you.
Get into that routine and accordingly set your goals.
Life takes its way. Everybody has to give hand in hand like mother, child, the family members, the doctors, the therapist, neighbours, neighbour’s children, the whole community has to work collectively towards the upliftment of the child.
I just wish that everybody becomes very inclusive and we are happy that I can see my country is becoming very inclusive and the infrastructure is becoming friendly. I request the government to work more towards it and let’s all work towards it.
Let’s be nice to special need children, involve them, schools should involve special need children, schools should give them admissions easily providing special educators or any infrastructure’s support to them and these children are amazing, they have a certain kind of talent but the role of mother, community, Teachers, Therapist is to find the talent of them.
There are children who are non verbal but they play Pianos amazingly
There are children who are having some sensory needs, they are very amazing with Painting
There are children who are not very good with socializing, I mean they will not interact with you but they are amazing with numbers they just remember your birth date even if you have met them after 10 years, they remember the birth date and they pick up things easily.
You will be amazed to know about my child. She cannot stand on her own, she cannot walk, she uses special aid walking sticks, sometimes she uses a wheelchair for long distance but you will be amazed to know that she can do cycling, she can do swimming, she can do horse riding.
5. How do you motivate your Child?
Motivation is very very important, you need to find out what will work for your child and which is suitable for your child and what is their interest, you need to give all kinds of opportunities to your child.
You just give them the paints and everything you can, you find out what they like, what they are interested in.
One day, this is what happened for me with my child, we were in park, my child was four years old at that time, she was not even started walking with any assistant devices, she was totally on a wheelchair at that time, she saw few children were doing cycling in the park and she said”oh mom, I want to do cycling”.
I was like “Oh god, how do I do that now? She cannot stand but how do I make her go cycling?”.
I got a cycle for her, I looked at a few videos on youtube, I posted on my International community on Facebook. What are the cycles available for special needs children?
They shared the kind of cycles they have but it was not available in India so I figured out how I can make a normal cycle into an adaptive cycle. I took the pictures and sent the cycle to the cycle shop and asked “Can you create something like this?” He tried and did something.
Then we were able to work out a model and ride. It takes time, she was very excited. She was able to ride it because of her excitement.
It needs a lot of patience and repetition is very important. You have to take her cycling for each and every day, fix a schedule and just keep on going, it was getting better day by day, from a smaller round to a bigger round and to a third bigger round and to make her do cycling without you standing there.
One day you will see that happens naturally. When people see her in the garden now, they ask me, “Has she started walking now?” and I say “Nope, she doesn’t stand on her own, she doesn’t walk but she can do cycling, she can swim, she does horse riding and she does all kind of sports, she plays badminton, Tennis”. I play badminton and I take her to the court. She loves it and she plays for a while.
It is important to give exposure to the child. I made her watch the Paralympics. I make her watch the Olympics these days and I was telling her the story about Meera Bhai. She started lifting the firewoods and now she has become a wrestler. So just have goals, work on those goals, that is important, repetition and perseverance are very important.
6. How do you manage your time for Work, Self and Child?
I met one of the doctors, she told me that don’t make your child as a project.
I have seen all the parents of special needs children make the child as their project. That is one of the major problems that happens because we are so much involved in their therapies and everything, we just don’t think about ourselves and then after a while, we start to become frustrated like “what are we doing? What is happening to our life? What has happened to us?” and then the negativity starts coming that is being reflected on the family or the child itself.
So balance is very important. To make your child grow, you have to grow yourself. It has to go hand in hand. To make your child and family happy, you have to make yourself happy.
To find that happiness, you have to make a schedule based on your child’s time schedule. You have to see if your child is engaged with your husband or some other family member, she is having school or something.
To say about myself, When I take my child to her physiotherapy classes which happens almost everyday, it takes a few hours to get her ready for the class, driving, driving back to home, 2 hours of classes. So the entire thing takes 3 hours.
In 3 hours, I will take my laptop along. While she is in her therapy classes with the therapist, I do my work, i take calls, video calls from my car. I create my content while sitting in her class in the meeting area.
While she sleeps at night, I work for another 2 hours. Right now I’m doing this call and she is in her school online class. So it all depends on what schedule fits you and you have to find the time.
Sometimes if you see people say that “I don’t have time, I don’t get time”. If you have looked at your screen, you would have browsed facebook, you would have watched random videos thousands of times, just block those things.
If you do that, you will see how much time is spent on you and how you can channelize that time.
Instead of comparing your life with other working woman who starts her day by 9 o clock, she would work till 5 o’clock then she will just shut down the laptop and then back to the children or may be cook a meal for her family and spend a family time, you have to choose what model works best for you.
Don’t compare with them. Look for what works best for you. Pick up those jobs which suit your model. So for me working 2-3 hours in the morning, then another 2 hours in the evening and another few hours at night works well for me.
So I usually take up those jobs that fit me. Always do something which you enjoy. It creates impact in your life. Don’t work to earn money. If you really enjoy your work, you will definitely get money, you will be happy and you will be able to manage your child in a better way because you are happy and earning well.
Hope you all are cheered up now and give your best to help the children with special needs.
If you want to have any guidance or need any clarification regarding raising a special needs child, you can contact mentor Chesta at [email protected].
She is ready to help you and Apart from that, she is passionately working for the women who badly want to get back to work after their career break.
You can visit her blog backpackersmom.com which has a lot of valuable information that you like and are interested in.
I would like to Thank Chesta for being an Inspiration to Other Parents and for her response to my queries.
Let’s wish for her child to do better things in future and for her betterment.
Thank you once again.
Please do share this with your friends so that it might help someone in need and do share your reviews in the Comments.
If you would like to know more about Parenting, you can read it here.