Today I’m reminded of just how special my son is. It’s not often that we think of a child with “special needs” in a positive light. Some people think, “what do we need to do to make this child look or feel more normal” or to help him/her to “fit in.” “This kid has something that needs some accommodation or extra help so he must take extra time”. Extra work to talk to that kid, no thanks….SPECIAL NEEDS.
Well, THAT’S RIGHT! My son IS special. He does take a bit more time to understand due to speech delays, it takes more time to for him to stop and talk to you instead of making elevator play in his “own” world. But, I find that if you take extra time to learn more about something you don’t understand, a SUPER feeling results….a feeling of accomplishment. Joshua’s eighth birthday is today. He has never met any milestone on time and each and every little skill he’s learned has taken him more time than children his own age to learn. This makes him a fighter, stronger than most of us. He also has a rare disease where his little body fights food as though it’s a foreign invader (eosinophilic esophagitis). He eats through a tube directly inserted into his stomach. He has NEVER had cake, cookies, tacos, pizza, or Thanksgiving dinner. He has been made fun of more times than I’d like to remember. He is not welcome at some schools because he’s got a disease that requires him to have a tube feeding.
He is one of the happiest, most joyful, kindest, bravest and most blessed child that I know. He will grow up to be a wonderful individual who will probably take extra time to get to know someone else who needs it. My prayer is that someone reading this will take a little extra time to learn about someone who’s a little different than them. You may be surprised at just how wonderful you feel about yourself for doing it!
Happy Birthday Joshua! XOXO WHAT’S SPECIAL ABOUT YOUR CHILD???? SHARE WITH US!!!!
By- Cara Koscinki MOT, OTR/L
Author of The Pocket Occupational Therapist- a handbook for caregivers of children with special needs. Questions and answers most freqenty asked to OTs with easy to understand answers and fun activities you can do with your child. Order anywhere books are sold. www.pocketot.com