Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Grey before my time

There are moments as mothers we think quietly to ourselves that we are not doing the best we can for our children. Those times may be when they are screaming at us for not getting the right cereal, refusing to clean their room, throwing a tantrum in the middle of the store, a failing grade at school. Parents of special needs children may encounter this feeling several times in a short period.

I am the parent of a teenager with severe ADHD and a few learning disabilities. There are times I know he can't help doing what he does but I get to the point where I feel as though I have not done enough. I sit back and know its not my fault or his fault for that matter. That does not dissolve the feeling of failure.

A youtube video was recently posted displaying an incredible outburst by a teenager who lost his online game privileges (you can search for mom cancels warcraft account). Everyone kept commenting how it was staged and was not real. The main reason it was believed to be fake was because nobody could believe a teenager could be that angry. The sad part is my child has been that angry and emotioanl at times. To me it was reality hitting me in the face. To others it was hilarious and fake.

Even when I look back at the times I am ready to pull at the hair dye to conceal my age, I am reminded of all the wonderful things I am proud of. I am proud he is outgoing, creative, silly, intelligent, a good cook. I hear from parents how he is so polite and well behaved. Those are the moments I am reassured I have done my job.

I am not the perfect mother but I do my very best. I am there when he is ill. I am spending the night when he is in the hospital. I am there to cheer on his sports and plays. I am there to watch the moments he is proud. I am there when he is sad. I am there to dust him off when he falls. I am there to support him when he is standing tall. I will be there when he goes off on his own. I will be there when he brings that girl home I don't like. I will be there with a box of tissues on his wedding day. I will be there when he believes he isn't the perfect father. I will be there to remind him it is ok and he is a great father.

Today he may not realize it but I love him more than anything. Tomorrow he will learn I wasn't the evil troll who restricted his 10pm curfew and why I did it. Next week he will see the tears I shed, not because he was a bad child, but because I am so proud.

He will tell himself he will be a better parent than I but one day find himself doing the exact same things; saying the exact same things. For me that is the best compliment. For me its because he has learned why I did what I did and wants to pass that on.

1 comment:

Dana said...

This sounds so familiar! I have a son who has ADHD. He's now 21. He was on Ritalin as a child but we took him off of it because it was stunting his growth. I remember he could get so angry he would make his nose bleed. It used to scare me! I think he still struggles with it today. And all the things you said about not being the perfect mother but doing the best you can...I've been there, too, girlfriend. So far, I've experienced every single one of those things you listed up to the wedding. He hasn't been married yet, but engaged twice. The first one we didn't like. The second one we DO like and think she's the one for him, but they have issues and I'm sure it stems from his ADHD. He doesn't know that, though.

Anyway, thought I'd let you know, you are NOT alone!

:) Dana