Worry. A state of mind that I have come to be well acquainted with. When you are blessed with children with special needs, you can't help but worry. What will become of them? How will they do in life? Will they overcome these obstacles? Will they be able to do well in school? Will they socially mature and make friends? Or will they be the kid who don't get invited to the Birthday party, the one last picked on the team? Will school lunch be a hurtful, dreaded experience because everybody is making fun of them and nobody will sit next to them? Can I do enough for them so that they will be able to find their place in the world, a place that leads to self contentment and inner happiness? Or will it be a life long challenge of having to watch my children struggle emotionally, socially, academically? Will I, as their parent have to watch and simultaneously feel my heart break for them? These are some of the things that cross my mind. As positive as I am by nature, when the day has come to an end, and the lights are off, I worry.
Yesterday at the park, as I watched my two free spirited, worry free, children play amongst their peers, my mind strayed once again to that all consuming question, "What will become of them?".
As I once again, faced these concerns for their futures, I decided to look in the present for some answers.
My friend Carm. She is classic OCD. When you talk to her, she is consistently blinking her eyes, clearing her throat, hyperventilating, and talking way to fast. She is definitely glitchy. Carm, is 40 years old. She finished college with a masters in Social Work, started her own Nail Salon, which evolved into a wellness center, and sold it for quite a impressive amount of cash...Everybody loves Carm. She is smart, funny, intuitive, and she draws people to her. Everybody is aware of her glitches...but they, as well as myself, just don't care. WE like Carm. Carm is successful, happy, and living her dreams. Really nothing to worry about over Carm.
My friend Donna. Donna is definitely on the ADHD side of the fence. She talks very fast, changes topic rapidly, often makes leaps in the conversation that appear to have nothing at all to what you are talking about. She is a meticulous note taker...she must...or she will forget. I just love Donna. She is a successful sales person who is smart, a great people read, hard working, a positive person to be around, and somebody whom I would not second guess to quickly. Donna has glitches. It is apparent after you get to know her...but who cares, did not stop me from loving our conversations and wanting to be around her. And apparently her glitches don't seem to get in the way of her meeting her fullest potential. Really nothing to worry about Donna.
Sara. Sara too can be a little ADD. Her short term memory is pretty awful. She often tells me the same story over and over again. Insists that the conversation that we had "never happened". Sara is one of the smartest people I know. It is often her that I go to if I am stumped. Sara is one of the most successful people in her industry. Her common sense is second to none. Her ability to be a chameleon and mold herself into just about any situation is admirable. She has a tremendous ability to see the "big picture", and it is this particular quality that has led to a life of success professionally, and inter personally. Sara is happy. People like Sara. Sara likes Sara...as well as she should, she is a good person, and an asset to have in one's life. Really nothing to worry over Sara.
Which leads me to myself. As a child I was an absolute mess. I came into this world, colicky, high-strung, a little ADD and way to sensitive. I have some battle wounds from childhood that I would rather not remember. As an adult, I can sometimes be a little too intense, still a little ADD, and my short term memory is rather embarrassing. Yet, today, I can say that I am happy. I have friends, a wonderful family, and I have enjoyed great success in my career. I am proud of who I am. I accept my flaws as well as my strengths. Like all of the people that I admire most in this world, despite all of our glitches, I have found my spot in this world and I am content. At the end of the day, I do not worry about myself....
With great relief, as I let my mind wonder through this empirical evidence, with the realization that perhaps most of us have come into this world a little glitchy, imperfect, and yet, through the grace of human spirit, loving parents, and perhaps some magic, we are all okay. With great relief , I embraced the knowledge that my children, too, would be okay.
I think everybody has a story. It is what makes us human. Where we draw strength from, glean wisdom, it's what help's us to understand our children...
So that is my new found wisdom for the day. I worry too much. I will always worry, that just comes with the territory of loving children. However, the next time I feel myself overcome with the thought, "What will become of their future?", I will look to present to find comfort.