How it all starts...
They hear the doctor give their 'diagnosis' and upon hearing the words, brain freeze sets in. Bizarre random thoughts flash through...'he'll never get married' or 'she'll not go to college'.
Random thoughts that pop to mind unbidden without a way to stop them. Nothing has changed, and everything has changed at the very same instant. It is then that they notice , the doctors' lips are still moving, and they are are not hearing. With great effort they force their brain to return to their body...to try to absorb what the doctor (who is still speaking as if they had not just been a million miles away) is telling them. Many parents have an eerily similar story. The diagnosis may differ, the age of the child may vary, but the 'instant of confirmation' that those niggling worries were not inconsequential... changes the course of the family forever.
They are off on a journey, like it or not, ready or not. There seem to be two paths the majority of parents take. There are the parents who fall into the quiet category. They keep personal information private while sorting things out. They quietly seek referrals, and begin the process of educating themselves about their childs' newly discovered needs, and they quietly begin to seek treatment. There are others who immediately are vocal about their problems, who seek public support and company. They gather their information from the network of parents and agencies that they must contact to begin to receive 'services' (help) for their children.
whether public or private, all wind up at the same agencies, at the same place, at the same time. There is no 'right' way, or 'wrong' way to begin the journey. One of the hardest parts in the whole journey is that first part where you go from having a seemingly normal life (with unfounded worries on the side), to a frenzied life full of uncertainty, and sometimes sadness.
Ride it out- it gets better- I promise!
After the 'why me's are over and done,
and the long road ahead has just barely begun
The day to day tasks may seem much too large
and you think to yourself who is really in charge?
Who's going to help us my child and I?
Who'll guide me as I muddle through all the things to decide?
The answer is simple, the answer is true-
The answers have all along been right there with you
Stop the worries, set aside the fear,
Right beside you on this journey is someone quite dear
Let them help you- just as you struggle to help them
Watch them, and they'll teach you how not to give in
The strength that you'll find comes from within
It's a strength that gives us the courage to begin
It is there in the courage it takes to be strong
The strength that it takes to not fit in or belong
If your child can face the world day after day,
With bravery and grace, let them show you the way
Tracy Lynn Cook