I am going to take a moment to tell my handful of followers about a book that I found to be more than worth reading. If you have a child with special needs, seen or unseen, or if you know someone that has a child with special needs, this book is definitely something you should investigate. It helps you, as a parent, work through your emotions, validate your feelings and find your way in a world full of people that just do not understand.
The book is called “Beyond the Diagnosis: The Path to Thriving as a Special Needs Parent,” and is written by Amy Mattson. It is now available on various sites, including Amazon and Barnes & Noble.
“Beyond the Diagnosis” took me on a journey that left me in tears. Not only did I empathize with the author, but I recognized myself in her words. Years of struggling with the stigma and the skepticism of others over the unseen diagnoses of my children had left me with huge feelings of self-doubt and anxiety over each decision that I made, each choice that I carefully pondered and made with as much information as I could with their best interests at heart.
I learned that I had never really grieved the diagnoses of my children and that not only is it okay to do so, but it is also a part of learning to thrive in the life that God has graciously presented me with. I also learned that it is okay to feel anger over the cards that your children have been dealt, and then to feel guilt over that anger. Knowing that I am not the only one that struggles with the myriad of emotions that you navigate from diagnoses to coping to thriving left me feeling like my emotions were valid for the first time in a very long time.
The author takes you on a very candid journey through her emotions – the shock, the guilt, the anger, the depression and then her uplifting journey as she learned to thrive. She discusses her struggles with anxiety, with coping, with lost friendships and community isolation. Working through the activities helped me find what works for my little family, and how we can find ways to thrive, even in a one-parent household.
This book is a MUST READ for parents of children with special needs, and it wouldn’t hurt to hand a copy to those in your life that may not understand what it is like to parent a child with special needs, seen or unseen.
Here is a link: