I am starting a new series of blog posts – it will start as “Tip of the Week” to provide information to people involved in the special education community – it may turn into tip of the day as I have 11 years of information to share!
I have been thinking about this for a very long time and WHERE to start – so I chose to start at the beginning – and the first feeling I had when my son was diagnosed with autism. FEAR. Fear was the first emotion that I experienced, dealt with for years and have finally overcome. Fear of the unknown……….
- the unknown of what autism is
- unknown of future
- unknown of medical testing, psychological testing, etc…
- unknow of efficacy of treatment and therapy
- unknown of psychologists, therapists, doctors, etc…
- unknown of what to do and what to do next
- unknown of child’s rights
- unknown of laws
- fear of my decisions
- fear of doctors advice
- fear of following my gut
- fear of not following professional advice
- fear of schools, teachers, administrators,advocates
- fear of financial effects on family
- fear of my decisions
- fear of SOMEONE SAYING NO
So now that I have experienced everyone of theses fears and unknowns, I can tell you that it wasn’t easy – I guess that was why I was a size 2. Decision making and facing fear and unknown does get easier and easier. You begin to trust yourself and to follow your gut…. Your gut is your best guide – you know your child the best. Maybe you don’t have a PhD or an MD or an MS but you are either a MOM or a DAD or a relative or teacher. Fear is a motivator and if you don’t face fear and stare it down, you will go nowhere. FEAR is only a feeling – one that can be overcome like sadness, like being upset – these feelings often pass with time – and so will FEAR.
Don’t be Afraid of FEAR – it is just another test in life – testing your courage – and even if you don’t find the answer right away, you gain courage, education, self-esteem, contacts, and a reason to keep going. Don’t let FEAR take away your rights and opportunities and that is exactly what it will do if you don’t face it and act upon it. You may stumble, but that is human nature – get up and try again!
Winston Churchill once said “NEVER, never, never give up!”