Two Words

I have been confronted with some things in the last few days that I wasn’t ready for. Or, was I? You probably know by now that our second daughter is different. She will be one year old next week and is functioning somewhere around the four month level. She is as sweet as can be and is the sunshine of my life! If you have seen her smile, you know that she is happy and well loved.

I was talking with a lady yesterday about Rebekah and she said to me: “As one mother of a special needs child to another mother of a special needs child…”. Did she say SPECIAL NEEDS? I almost didn’t hear what she said after that. We were discussing some options that we have and will have to chose between in the near future for Rebekah and in all of this I am being stretched.
I have known for months in my heart and in my mind that Rebekah is a “special needs” child. No one says it out loud though. Everyone (including the “professionals”)says: developmentally behind, a little slow, still getting there – and so on. It is true that the neurologist has not been able to give us any kind of insight as to how Rebekah will be in a month, year, or ten years. She may completely catch up with other kids by the time she heads to kindergarten, or she may end up living with Chris and me for the rest of her life. No one knows (well, no one here on earth).
I was talking with my mom later about my conversation with this other mother and I told her that it was such a relief to have someone finally say it out loud that Rebekah is, and does have, special needs. This does not confine me, does not depress me, does not limit me in any way. In fact, I see it quite the opposite way. This empowers me to educate myself, to work harder at providing services she needs, to open my eyes to others around me who need someone to come along side of them. Before…I felt as though I had been sitting here waiting for her to “catch up”.
I have said that this journey is a lot like walking in the complete darkness. Someone has warned me that there is a very sharp cliff out there that could lead to our doom. They did, however, forget to tell me if the cliff is two feet in front of me, three miles in front of me, or maybe even behind me. I must inch along in the dark hoping that I am doing the right things for myself and my family. Crying out to the Lord to lead me and show me the right path. Praying for others to come along side of me and light the path.
I am definitely changed by those two words I heard yesterday. But for the better. I feel stronger, fuller, and more determined.
Thank you ~from one mom of a special needs child to another mom of a special needs child!
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