Monday, April 26, 2010

crutches

I think I've discussed this topic before, or at the least something very much like unto it. It seems to lurk in the back of my mind constantly, and then occasionally it comes to the forefront of my thoughts and I can't seem to shake it for awhile.
It's been on my mind for awhile now.

And as much as it pertains to raising a little boy with some "special needs" of various kinds, it also pertains to myself and my own limitations and challenges, which I sometimes allude to. So this might be a little confusing as I jump back and forth and talk about a lot of different things without actually telling you much of anything in the way of details. Sorry. I just wish I could figure it out.

The question is this:
when do you accept your own limitations and when do you make yourself stretch?
when is backing off and saying "I can't" the only sensible smart thing to do and when is it just making excuses?
when do you accept that your child has differences and will not be a certain way - and when are you just using this kind of thinking as a crutch?

Have you ever dealt with a situation like that? What do you do?

I can certainly see and agree that we want ourselves and our kids to reach their full potential - we want to improve and learn in all areas of life - and we want to know that we are capable of doing "hard things." If a person has a disability, we want them to learn how to do everything everyone else does. We want them to be seen as "normal" as much as possible.

Just as an example: let's say you have a child born blind. 100% blind. Of course you do all you can to help them learn to get around without being able to see. You want them to know that this doesn't have to be a limitation in terms of what they can do in life. There are accomodations. There are modifications to activities. There is help.
But the fact remains, doesn't it? That your child cannot see. Nothing changes that. At some point you have to accept this. You mourn all that this child will never see, never really appreciate, will never really do, will never be like everyone else.

So then. When I look at my own challenges and those of my kids - I always have to wonder. Am I asking them - am I asking myself - to just stretch and grow? Or am I asking them to do something they simply cannot do? Which parts am I using as a crutch, to keep on going as I'm used to doing and not have to change what could be changed? And which parts are the reality of what is? That sometimes it's just the best we can do.
Because try as we might to insist otherwise, asking a blind child to look and see is just setting everyone up for frustration and failure. Isn't it?

What do you think?!?

3 comments:

Jennifer said...

I don't think any of us know the answers to that. There is someone who does know the answers though.

Spending more time talking to Him, contemplating Him, reading about Him, listening to His servants and listening for His answers has been the only way I have found the hard answers.

I know He has the answers and even if they don't come immediately, they will come. He will lead you and strengthen you when you put your faith in Him and do the work that is required, because it does take faith and work. Good luck, girl. You are in my prayers.

Mr. Sessions said...

Kristen,

I agree with the comment above. I wonder about the same questions all the time. Looking at myself now as an adult, I find that if I am really really honest, I can usually tell if I am pushing myself to the limit or merely making an excuse for myself. It is far more difficult I find to do that for another individual outside of myself because I rarely know exactly how they feel about it and agency plays a big part as well. I have an uncanny ability though with my students to see inside them and be given quite possibly by the spirit a glimpse at what is standing in their way academically or emotionally of their getting to the next level. I am able to develop activities and lessons that help them. For example, I had a girl who was very bright but because of a divorce, she had developed a lot of anger and had an explosive temper. Nothing much seemed to work until a new boy showed up. Geeky would be putting it mildly but they became fast friends and she helped him feel important because she was kind of cute and she was flattered that someone as smart as him would pay attention to her. So it worked out perfectly to help smooth off their rough edges. All I am saying is that sometimes it takes an outside person to help our children in ways we simply can't do ourselves. A special person who gets it. I didn't potty train my oldest. His preschool teacher had an incentive program that worked. Hard as I tried, it just didn't happen. Sometimes the Lord places special people in our pathway to help us with things we can't do. I guess pray for that person to show up for your son and then keep your eyes open for that person. Good luck. Spencer is facing all this too. Laird

Alyssa said...

That is what I have come to decide as well. I don't know but, I know our Savior Jesus Christ does know. I still am caught between expecting very little and being pleasantly surprised by any progress and expecting something hoping they will rise to the occasion.

Over all I have two funny-ish quotes for you...not sure they have anything to do with anything but here they are...

Life is fragile handle with prayer. (even small and simple prayers fill the bucket of our hearts drop by drop)

Blessed are the flexible....for they will not be bent out of shape.

I hope it helps to know you aren't alone in your struggle to find the balance and resources for your family. Love you!

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