Special needs mama, you’re on a different path . . . and it’s okay.

Sometimes you don’t even notice it anymorethe differencethe sometimes loneliness of your path. Because most days it’s a beautiful walk. But then, there are days and times that sting.

Going to a baseball game for your friends’ children who are the same age as your autistic son. An image flashing in your mind of all the boys as babies playing together . . . they were all the same then. The baseball boys are grown nowmature, little guys, and your sonhe seems so childlike still.

RELATED: When He Outgrew Cute

A knot in your stomach when you attend the fourth-grade recorder concert. Can he do it? The relief you feel when it goes okay.

Seeing his younger siblings navigate the world with so much more ease.

The times you are faced with a decision. Should he attend middle school? Or do we, yet again, forge a new path? Something different, untraditional, unknown . . . and the path becomes scary again. The questions begin, “Am I doing the right thing?” That’s all we want as moms, isn’t it? To do the right thing for our kids.

In these moments I feel guilty that I can’t talk about my son without including his diagnosis. Guilty that sometimes I get tired of this walkit’s tiring. It’s hard to make unconventional life choices, it’s hard to walk a path that isn’t paved. It’s lonely to see friends walking a path different than ours. It gets so lonely.

In these moments, I remember the gentle heart I’m protecting. The heart thatafter a horrendous birthquieted the room when he approached my face in silence, opening his mouth quietly without a sound and assuring me we were okay.

RELATED: My Son’s Autism Diagnosis Gave Me the Tools I Needed as His Mom

The toddler who walked around on his alphabet rug when the preschool psychologist came to tell me of his autism diagnosis. I cried because I was scared. I felt him behind us, his tiny hands on our shoulders, pushing the three of us together in a hug. The elementary student who has captured the heart of every teacher and para in our district. The beautiful heart, that despite so many challenges, remains pure and true and golden.

Then, I remember our path is simply different. It’s unpaved. It’s the path many people don’t know about it. If I slow down, I see it’s beautiful. Just like hikes that are challenging, they sometimes bring us to the most beautiful untouched places. I see my son like that.

We will walk our path, and we will be okay. You will walk your path and it will be okay. I’m rooting for you.

So God Made a Mother book by Leslie Means

If you liked this, you'll love our book, SO GOD MADE A MOTHER available now!

Order Now

Check out our new Keepsake Companion Journal that pairs with our So God Made a Mother book!

Order Now
So God Made a Mother's Story Keepsake Journal

Krystal Sieben

Hi, I'm Krystal. Minnesota wife and mom of three great kids, three rescue dogs, and a Fjord horse named Syver. Former middle school teacher turned nonprofit director. A chance meeting with a special horse changed my path, and I now run Three Little Burdes Nonprofit. Our goal is to provide adults and children of all abilities with an introduction to ponies and horses. Check us out! http://www.instagram.com/three_little_burdes

Autism May Never Get Easier, But We Keep Getting Stronger

In: Child, Motherhood
Mom kissing son

My son, Stalen, was diagnosed on the autism spectrum at 21 months old. He is now almost six and non-verbal. People always say to me that they think things (autism) will get easier as Stalen gets older. I really hope they are right! But, I don’t think that’s entirely true. One thing that I have learned since his diagnosis on January 16, 2017 is to never ever underestimate autism. Sometimes we win a battle but the fight always continues. I don’t think autism will get easier. That’s not me being negative—but real and truthful. I think as Stalen ages we...

Keep Reading

I Stopped Trying To Make You Different

In: Kids, Motherhood
Little girl with orange flowers

My dear Avery, One year ago you were diagnosed. One year ago, I heard the doctor quietly say, “I think, excuse me, she does have autism.” I held onto the phrase “different not less.” In the weeks that followed I would tell you, “Things are different, they are not less. You might think differently than some, but you are not less. Life is hard, but you have not made it less.” This year has made me a better mother, wife, daughter, and sister. It has made me a better person. Oh, how it has made me stronger. I’m surprised my...

Keep Reading

What if I’m Failing My Son With Autism?

In: Kids, Motherhood
Mother and child's hands

I am not much of a night owl. Those who know me will tell you I am in bed by 9 p.m. if at all possible. Lately, though, I find myself searching for any excuse not to sleep. I am constantly looking for a distraction to keep me awake at night. I don’t want to sleep because I have started to have a reoccurring nightmare. It is the kind of nightmare that feels so real, I’m not sure if it is a dream or if it really happened. I wake up feeling like I cannot breathe. I am trying my...

Keep Reading