Spinning plates for all of us on the special needs journey is a “norm.” We know we can do it: spin a lot of plates all at one time, keeping them going, running from plate to plate and not letting any of them fall—because we have to. For many of us, it’s an instant reflex action and reaction in the care of our children with special needs. Others might watch in amazement, because they can see that we know the drill, and we have it somewhat mastered. That’s a good thing, because we don’t always have people offer to join in, help out, or take over! We are grateful for those who help!

We have been blessed to have many helping hands in the care of our son. In the scheme of caring for a person with special needs, our son requires less care than many of our friends’ children who have special needs. Joey is able to occupy himself nicely throughout the day, but when it comes to being on his own? That’s out of the question, even when we’d like to go a different direction!

Often, when we talk about our children with special needs, we talk about their limitations, challenges, and the things they have accomplished. It’s always a joy to share the victories in the midst of what is often a lot of work, scheduling, and coordinating a lot of people to help make it happen. But as parents of Joey who is 38, we are also very aware that while we have a lot we need to do with and for him, there are also a lot of things we’ve never had to worry about or be concerned about.

Perhaps you can relate, too! We have never had to worry about:

  • FRIENDS. Sadly, Joey hasn’t had a lot of friends, but in the course of school and work he has had people around him that have cared well for him, and watched out for his safety. Family members have been his friends. Having special needs has taken away the guesswork about who his friends are, who he’s hanging around, and who’s influencing him—for good or bad. Joey seems satisfied with us, other family members, with the groups from school and other care options. For this, we give thanks. On the flip side, our typical children gave us opportunities to really watch with whom they are and were associated.

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Source: Special Needs Parenting- Key Ministry

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