The Little Things..
It’s ok to let teaching moments slide sometimes to celebrate & enjoy your special child..
Do you ever feel like rather than just being able to enjoy your child and spend quality time with him or her, you are in “teaching” mode, more than you want to be?
Like when sitting at a cafe, waiting for your coffee & bam!..it suddenly it becomes a lesson on social skills or manners or using cutlery......blah blah blah..
It’s so natural to do this, especially of you are a parent to a child with extra needs. We are conditioned to be “on” a lot of the time.
Since birth or diagnosis, you have probably been to so many therapies where every detail of your child’s development is examined under a microscope. We are often sent home with “homework” and try and find opportunities to fit teaching moments into the day.
It feels wonderful to pass our wisdom on, but doing this with special needs children can often feel different & can be exhausting. It is often a one sided conversation (with a non verbal child) or might be met by disinterest or lack of understanding or even be interrupted by the preferred topic your child would rather talk about.
It can also feel more urgent somehow, like there are so many things to teach. (The very thought of teaching the visual world to a child with a vision impairment can be really overwhelming!)
We have been working really hard on independent showering lately. It has been a long process but we are really making progress. So tonight when he got undressed, turned on the shower, rubbed the shampoo in and attempted to dry himself I was super proud! He then got himself dressed and accidentally put his top on inside out and the wrong way around.
In this moment I had to stop and think... Should I explain that the feeling of the printing on the neckline at the front meant that it was on wrong? Or do I just let it go? It is important to teach a blind person the tactile signs of clothing. But, it also felt wrong to correct him now that he had done so well.
So, I went against my instincts to “teach” said nothing. We sat on his bed, read some books & sang some songs instead.
And do you know what? When he woke up in the morning, the Pyjamas were the right way around. He had realised himself that they weren’t right and changed them around by himself.
So, give yourself a well earned break friends! Keep passing on your wisdom, but remind yourself that it’s ok to let the little things slide sometimes, for your own sake and your kids as well!