FROM PERSONAL EXPERIENCE
On this journey some of the most vital things that I have learned are:
- Research – read as much as you can about the diagnosis/es – knowledge is power and will prove invaluable. Personally, I found books written by other special needs parents to be most helpful of all. The sharing of their personal experiences has taught me so much and inspired me to do the same.
- Acceptance – make the best of what you have. This is your life now even though it may not be what was hoped or planned for.
- Ditch the negatives in your life and as harsh as it sounds this does include people who are not supportive.
- Look after yourself: eat healthy and stay hydrated, exercise as it is great for you not only for your physical well being but your mental health also, take a good multivitamin/mineral, each day take a little bit of time to do something just for you i.e. a great cup of coffee alone to recharge, do some art or writing, music or singing or whatever helps you to feel good.
- Join a parent support group relating to your child’s special need either online or in the community. These people are awesome, supportive and it really helps that someone else ‘gets’ your life.
- Mindfulness – this is almost like a meditation or losing yourself in the moment. Whenever you are doing daily random stuff try to clear your mind and totally immerse yourself into the task at hand. A good way to do this is to hone all your focus into your five senses. It does take some practice but it can be a very helpful exercise.
Be grateful and thankful – for the simple things in life and especially for the people who have been a part of your journey.