What Your "High Need Child" Mom Friends Desire Most
"Mom, they can't hear my thoughts... right?"
Yesterday we tested out a homeschool co-op. A private community education center. Honestly, I don't care what you call it. I just know that my daughter smiles there...
When she was surrounded by her peers and focused on growing alongside them, her intrusive thoughts seemed miles away for a few short hours...
And I could breathe again.
While our daughter is 1,000 percent extroverted - sensory processing challenges and an anxiety disorder make social situations varied. Some go off without a hitch; others don't.
So, what can I tell you as a mother who raises a child like our Wild girl?
I need you.
I need you to look me in the eye and tell me I'm doing good... amazing... great.
I need you to see my child's strengths, and also take into consideration that often, you won't see her weaknesses, stumbles, tumbles and falls. She saves her wildness just for me most days, because I'm safe.
And if you do see us in a massive meltdown (or even a small one), I really need you to give me encouragement - a mouthed "You've got this" will keep me going for miles and miles.
Also, I need you to offer to drop by, text, write me a note, invite me to dinner...
Even if I decline your offer a few times. I'm probably exhausted, if I can be honest, but I still always appreciate the gesture.
Friend, I know it probably doesn't seem like I need your support. But I need you to know that if I don't look strong on the outside, my Wild will not feel safe. So I'll always "seem" strong. Yet, I might not always feel it.
Okay, often I won't feel it.
I'll smile and march on, though...
It's what your special needs mommy friends do.
We keep going.
And yes, sometimes it's because we have no other choice.
Finally, I need your prayers. Big ones.
This is not a universal list. But I believe it is the start of an important one. Being a parent of an emotionally high need child, and sometimes a physically demanding one too, is incredibly lonely some days. Some weeks. Some months. When I wrote to you back in May, I think I made some of that clear.
Yet, I am beyond thankful that I get to be her mommy. The calm to her wild.
Let me end with this:
I don't want your pity, your sympathy, and sometimes I don't even want your advice. I don't need you to take a day and walk a mile in my shoes. I think for most of us, we just want you to know that a different pair of shoes exists... One that you can't begin to understand, unless you're willing to endure six years of sleepless, and I do mean sleepless, nights. And three phone calls a day from schools, confused by why the 504 plan isn't working. And stares from strangers that don't quite understand. And countless doctors telling you they don't have any idea what to do next...
I don't desire any of that for you though, dear one.
Just one bit of the above, the encouragement, the text, the hug.
If you're standing with me in this place and space of real, raw motherhood, I hope you'll add in the comments what YOU crave.
We're better together. And I'm just one lady walking this path, praying each day to make it through with a smile on my face.
Cheering you on, always