Bloom Where you are Planted

I love spring time. I love the newness of everything. How everything is turning green and flowers are beginning to bloom. How winter’s slumber is being shaken off, and life is awakening. Springtime just brings a pep in your step and a song in your heart. At least it does me. And goodness knows getting outside helps all those winter blues fade away. The weather was gorgeous today and I could not help thinking that springtime is coming!

I bought this cute springy shirt for Abigail a few months ago and it was perfect for today! Bright yellow with a huge flower on it! It instantly made me think of the saying, “Bloom where you are planted.” I’ve never thought much about it before, but that saying applies so much to Abigail. So today she wore her yellow shirt proudly, because Abigail is most definitely blooming where she is planted!

I was told my baby’s eyes were not normal at two months old. We instantly thought blindness, but today her vision is perfect! Yes, she wears glasses to help her eyes stay focused, but her vision is perfect. Abigail is known for those cute pink glasses, and countless strangers brag abt them. Even in the face of bad eyesight, Abigail is blooming!

First day in those pink glasses!

At four months we were told that Abigail had low muscle tone – hypotonia (they call it floppy baby syndrome). She has met zero milestones. She cannot hold herself up. Carrying her is like carrying a bag of potatoes. She is so heavy and does not help at all! She stays under the ten percentile because she has no muscles and muscles weigh more than fat. But despite all this Abigail is crawling! She has mobility. She is pushing up and she wants to stand so bad. She can sit with minimal assistance. She is doing things that amaze everyone. In spite of her diagnoses, Abigail is blooming!

Abigail cannot keep up with other children. They move too fast for her. Children her age are too advanced for her and run away before she can play. And children younger than her just want her glasses or her hair which scares her. But she is getting so much better around children. She has been crawling around with her nephews and they pass toys to her. In music class she is brave enough to get down on the floor and crawl around now. She is talking and laughing in class which means she is getting more comfortable around other toddlers. Even with her fears, Abigail is blooming!

In every area I feel like Abigail is blooming. She is becoming stronger, more social, and she is growing every day! Abigail has no idea that she is developmentally behind. She has no idea she is unique. She has no idea that she lives a very weird life compared to a normal three year old. She is one of the happiest children you will ever meet. She is smart. She is kind. And she is going to do BIG things!

I just feel like if this little girl who has so much against her can bloom where she is planted then we all can. I would never wish this life on any child. But I am a proud mama because even in the worst of situations and what life has to throw at her my daughter is blooming. She is a determined little fighter. She is fiercely independent and a little rebel at heart. All this makes her a force to be reckoned with. She is going to knock down barriers and is going to make miracles. Abigail will be able to bloom wherever she is planted!


Growing Up Slowly

When you have a child time seems to speed up somehow. In just a few short months Abigail will be three years old. Where has three years gone? I still remember being pregnant with her. I had horrible night sickness (my morning sickness always hit around 3 and stayed all evening). And around week 12 I remember having multiple thoughts that I was going to die at any point, but the only thing that kept me going was that I was growing another life, and her life mattered too much to give up. But here we are almost three years later and I am glad I kept shoving food down my throat after all because having Abigail was worth all those weeks of sickness.

I have no idea how parents of typical children do it though. I mean an average child is sitting by six months and is walking by a year. They start talking and being independent. They get sassy and push the limits and they know where every button of yours is. Your baby grows up in a blink of an eye! You might get a few cuddles here are there but after they are mobile they don’t sit still for long. Again I just don’t know how you do it!

We have been so blessed in a weird way that Abigail has grown up so slowly. I’ve never thought about that before, but it hit me the other day we are getting a small blessing in disguise. Don’t get me wrong I wish everyday my little girl could walk and run and play like every other 2 year old. I cry that she cannot communicate the way she wants to. But even in the bad things and the things that don’t make sense I truly believe you receive little blessings in disguise. Sometimes you don’t see those blessings while you are in the middle of the storm, but they are there. Abigail herself is my blessing. She is an amazing little lady! But the fact that, as a mother, I get to soak in every stage a little longer is amazing!!!

We had a newborn basically for about 10-12 months. For Abigail’s first year of life she really wasn’t aware of her environment. She just loved watching people’s faces. She had barely any head control and her muscle tone was basically none existent. She was exclusively breast fed, which was not my choice but she wouldn’t eat baby food very well so we did what we had to do. That first year was hard!! Abigail did not show a lot of progress. We had no idea what was going on. We had no clue how to take care of a baby, much less a baby that doctor’s kept telling us ‘wasn’t normal.’ The doctors kept telling us things that we didn’t understand or that we didn’t like. We loved our baby and she was the happiest, easiest newborn ever so it was hard for us to see anything ‘wrong’ with her. Around a year old she was still around 5-6 months developmentally, so I got to savor those newborn moments for longer.


Abigail around 7 months – she was still the sweetest thing you ever saw! But she had no interest in those toys you see. We always tried new things though.

Then her second year of life came and things started to progress. She became more aware of her environment, she started to like food, and she showed true potential physically. We began to learn we didn’t have to listen to everything the doctors said. We began to learn the system and find things that were helpful for us. We had amazing therapists that encouraged me and worked with Abigail diligently. But I was still able to savor those baby moments longer because she was around a 6-9 month old developmentally.


This picture means the world to me! Abigail was around 15 months in this picture. I left her on the couch to go get ready (crazy huh? but she never moved so it worked for us), and I returned to a smiley baby and an overturned bucket of toys! I snapped a quick picture because I was so excited! This was the first time Abigail had ‘played’ on her own!!!

Today, we have hope like we have never had before. Abigail is doing the best she has ever done. She is eating (and a lot of times helping herself) normal table food, she is moving, she is learning to play in new ways, and she is trying to communicate like never before. We are in such an exciting time! I feel so much more confident in what I am doing. Medically Abigail is healthy and at this point her doctor is simply trying to find the cause of why she is the way she is. But if they never give us an answer I will be okay because she is progressing forward every day.

Abigail is still only around a year old developmentally maybe 18 months in some areas cognitively. But if course she cannot sit or stand yet. But for almost three years I have gotten to savor what most parents only have 1 year to experience. It is like time has slowed in our house. This means we get to see the tiny little steps of progress and we celebrate the tiny victories. This means that sometimes the days are long! I get tired of having to lug her everywhere, because goodness she is getting heavy!! Sometimes it would be so convenient if she could sit because we could do so many more things. Sometimes I have to be creative while we are out, and about, and going to a bathroom with her in a public restroom when I forget the stroller is a trip. But I am savoring!

We may be in the toddler stage for a long time. Honestly, she may never leave it. We have no idea what Abigail’s future holds. I tell people all the time. Abigail has the potential to be a 100% normal 5th grader who you wouldn’t even know went through all this when she was 2. On the other hand she could be living with us forever because she never leaves childhood mentally. We have no idea what her future holds. But right now I know we are hitting the toddler stage hard, and after 2 years of being in baby stage that is tough on this mama. I’m watching Abigail grow and mature everyday. I see my baby growing into a little girl. She is beautiful in every way!! And while she might not be growing up like every other toddler, I appreciate that she is growing slowly. It gives my mama heart time to soak in every moment, every change, and every day with my little sunshine. While I wouldn’t have chosen this life for us, I am blessed to have a little one who is growing up slowly.

Seeds of Hope

Gardening is not my thing. I was not born with a green thumb. I have dreams of having plants in my home, but I kill everything. I always wanted a venus fly trap when I was a teenager, so I got one for my birthday one year. I fed it a lady bug and killed it. I did grow some rosemary plants this summer. They were looking great and then I knocked the pots off the windowsill promptly killing those. I do have one plant by my front door that has miraculously not died for six months. I don’t even know what it is, but it’s apparently my perfect plant. I water it when I think about it and do nothing else with it and it’s still growing so I really like it whatever it is.

While gardening is not my thing, it has always been a hopeful dream for me to become a gardener. My dad has always planted a vegetable garden every summer, and I think it’s amazing that such a tiny little seed can grow juicy red tomatoes, and the perfect okra. Plants are amazing things! They start as a tiny seed and with a little bit of water, sunlight, and care they can grow to be ancient oak trees, or food to nourish households, or flowers to add beauty to tables. I know there’s a lot that goes into growing plants that I don’t understand, but the whole process amazes me!

Last year was a season of winter in our household. We had just transitioned to a new home and a new city. We were looking for jobs, a new church, and doctors for Abigail. We were figuring out a new routine and adjusting to leaving behind old friends and finding new ones. It was very quiet and uneventful as the winter season usually is. We were ready for a new season to be upon us, and life to begin again. Jordan would often remind me that ‘this is just a season, Heather.’ Well sometimes a few months can feel very long when you are waiting for things to happen.

But as the new year approached and I began thinking of new goals and dreams I had for 2018, hope came too. Right now this hope is just in tiny little seeds. We have not seen anything mature yet, but God has blessed us with these seeds of hope and I think spring is soon coming for our family. These are some seeds of hope that are being planted in our lives right now:

1.) Jordan thinks he has found a way to begin a teaching career, something he has been wanting for a long time now. He will have to work and study really hard the next few months to accomplish his goals, but if anyone can do it he can! If all works out perfectly he could quit both his retail jobs, be home more, and he would be happier with his career. We are praying big time for the next couple of months to go well.

2.) We had a meeting about Abigail going to preschool in the Fall. I was very hesitant about it before going in, but the ladies at the meeting reassured me about all my doubts and fears, and now I am excited about her starting school. She would have double the therapy time, and be able to socialize with children her age. I just think huge improvements could happen! I’ll be a basket case when she leaves me (it will only be four days a week and half days at that), but I know it will be the best for us both.

3.) We also just met with an equipment guy today, and we are going to apply to get Abigail a stander and a wheelchair she could push herself around in.


This is the stander will we be getting!

I am so excited to get her these pieces because it will help her so much! Our physical therapist is also considering getting her into leg braces to work on strengthening her legs. There will be a lot of changes for Abigail, but much needed changes to try to help her walk!!!

4.) Abigail has been pulling up on everything lately! Oh, she wants to stand up so bad so I know the fight is in her to gain mobility. She is a crawling machine. Her poor elbows stay carpet burned now because she pulls around so much. I invite her to follow me from room to room instead of carrying her, and she is so good about listening and coming with me. She is also becoming a better communicator, and can tell you when she is done or when she wants something. Her speech is even coming along in its own way. Just so many improvements happening almost over night!

5.) There are so many areas I want to help in and there are so many needs I see. I keep seeing little doors cracking open in front of me. I am praying the right opportunity comes along and that I can see it when it comes. Through things at church and talking to my friends and other moms at therapy my eyes are opened to things that need to happen. I am ready to do more, and I now when the time comes I will be ready to respond.


We are both so thankful for little seeds of hope (and some warmer weather)!!

So all these little seeds are being planted, and I pray that they take root and grow into huge blessings. Waiting for a garden to grow is hard, but while you are waiting for the fruit to be produced there are so many things you have to do in between. I know we will be busy watering and nurturing these seeds to grow into beautiful blessings this year. I only pray we are good stewards of the things God is blessing us with, and that the fruit will produce new seeds that we can share with others.

I have learned so much in this season of winter that I know will help as the spring time approaches. God has taught me a lot about trials, temptations, doubts, patience, love, self-control, relationships, and so much more. I am thankful that God gives you quieter seasons of life to allow you to learn the things you need to learn before the busier seasons come. I feel prepared and ready for what the days ahead may hold. I know that I will never be done learning and I still have a lot to work on personally, but I also know that I am not alone. And when then seeds begin to take root and grow you better bet that I will be admiring my life with awe and with a very thankful heart!


Goals for Abigail

I have mixed emotions about the new year. I love the excitement of beginning fresh and dreaming about what another year holds. But resolutions and goals stress me out. I’ve always preferred calling them things I want to do rather than goals. I know that’s silly and the same thing in reality but the word goal makes me shrink away. Because often I don’t meet these said goals I set for myself, and I hate failure. But every year I list some things I want to achieve in the different areas of my life – marriage, family, children, personal, ministry, relationships, etc. I’m pretty excited about my dreams this year and I am trying to make them more practical to do since I’m a busy mom. I’m not going to share with the world all my expectations for the year, but I thought I would share the ones I want specifically for Abigail.

I know these are lofty dreams, but if you don’t aim high then what do you have to work for? I am still developing plans on how these dreams will be achieved, but I am praying this is another year of big progress for us! Abigail has come so far and it only shows that she is capable of doing great things! I am still learning how to teach her and how she learns best, but we are learning together and that’s fun!! But here are the four goals I have for Abigail this year.


Us from a year ago. Just having a lazy day playing in our bed. Here’s to more family days together!

1.) Monthly Family Date
Of course, I want to date my husband more and we have plans in the works to make that happen, but I think it’s so important to spend time as a family too. I love dinners around the table when we are all home and adding in a monthly family date night will be so much fun!! With Abigail we can’t do as much as we could do with a normal toddler, but I still plan to make the monthly activities fun for us all. January’s family date includes making our on pizzas and decorating cookies. Nothing crazy but we never get to make a mess all together and then we get to pig out on delicious food after it’s all over! Pictures will be coming. This is one of my favorites goals!!

2.) Being more intentional with my time with her
A lot of times while we are playing I pull out my phone and check social media or I watch television while we pass toys back and forth. Even though I am physically present, often my mind is a million miles away. I want to be more intentional with our playtime. Play time is where children learn a lot and I want that time to be meaningful to her and to me. I want her to know she is more important than a mindless sitcom or what so and so just posted.


We love our therapists and we are excited to gain some new ones and find some new doctors!

3.) Find doctors and therapists that can help us
This one has been on my heart for awhile now. We are in a rut with our doctors and it’s time we change things up a bit. No one is helping us, and I believe they have no idea what is going on with Abigail so instead of saying that they are just dragging their feet. So it’s time to find a new neurologist who can give us some direction. And a lot of moms I have talked to have given me suggestions on other types of doctors who could help us too. So this year it’s my duty to research and find new doctors to try to get some answers for my little girl. Also, I want to try to get her into aquatic therapy! I think it would be fun and the benefits would be perfect for Abigail. We are also starting with a new occupational therapist this year and I am excited to see how that helps her too! Just a lot of needed changes happening in 2018.


Fun crafting from 2017. Looking forward to learning more fun things with her in 2018!

4.) Make weekly lesson plans and focus on key things I want her to learn
Abigail will be three in May, and she still has so much she needs to learn. We are so focused on getting her to sit and hold toys that she never hears colors or numbers or animal sounds like a typical toddler. I know it’s a long stretch for her to learn these things, but I want to start introducing them to her on a more regular basis so at least she will be familiar with them. This year I plan to make ‘lesson plans’ of sorts each week so I can focus on different things we want to learn for that week. Repetition is key! Again, I have no idea what I am doing, but I just want to have fun and spend that intentional time with Abigail as I try to prepare her for preschool and kindergarten. So here are some things I want her to learn this year or at least be familiar with.
– Animal sounds
– Identify colors
– learn to color
– Know her age(hold up fingers)
– Know 15 signs in sign language
– Know family names
– Say real first word
– Stack objects
– Sit for 5 minutes
– Bear weight in legs
– Feed herself with spoon
– Drink by herself

A New Year

Last year I wrote a blog about how 2017 might just be a year of miracles (you can read that blog here). Well, I am not sure it was the miracles we were necessarily looking for, but 2017 was full of some good things! Yes, very small, simple blessings, but to us these things were BIG. Jordan was promoted at work and even though he had to pick up a second job we were blessed financially to finish the year with only one income. We never were scared of where our next meal would come from, or lacking clothes on our back. Sure, money was tight and we could not splurge on the latest, greatest things we wanted, but how badly did we need those things anyway? We found a church home (finally). After searching, we now call Eastwood Baptist home. We are not involved as much as we would like to be, but that is something to work on this year. I retired my old Jeep Liberty I had since I was 15, and now drive a tank (that’s what I call the Expedition because it’s HUGE). I like having the room and being the big guy on these Cobb County roads. And this small town girl actually does not mind driving around here now. I even honked my horn at someone the other day! So watch out world!!!

IMG_8100 (1)

Abigail achieved some milestones as well. Again, not your typical ones, but around here we celebrate everything! Abigail can now feed herself, she loves to pull up with her arms, and she can crawl around pulling with her arms so well now. She loves to play with her toys, and loves you playing with her. She has found a new love for Sesame Street. She loves music and laughing. She is getting friendlier around people, and even around little kids! We started speech therapy, which is helping so much. Abigail is learning sign language, and can do about five signs by herself now. She is becoming more and more vocal everyday! She can say, “bye”, “yeah”, “ma-ma”, “da-da”, and sometimes we swear we here a “hey”. She is sleeping in her new big girl bed like a champ, which we are all grateful for. We just switched her to a new OT, so we are excited to see how that will help her. And she is growing up to be the most beautiful blond headed, blue-eyed girl you will ever meet.

Every year I try to focus on a key Bible verse and one word to keep me going throughout the year. My 2017 word was “Press on” from Philippians 3:14, “I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.” I just really helped me when things would come up with Abigail or I would get discouraged. Almost like Dory in ‘Finding Nemo’ said, “Just keep swimming.” That’s what kept playing in my head, ‘just keep pressing on.’ God has called me to this life, and He will see me through. But every time I wanted to quit and throw in the towel I was reminded of this verse. I was so helpful! I am glad God impressed it on my heart last year.

So these last few weeks I have been thinking of what my 2018 word and verse would be. I haven’t come across anything, but today I sat down with my new devotional and the very first verse was Psalm 9:10. It could not be more perfect. It reads, “Those who know Your name trust in You, for you, Lord, have never forsaken those who seek you.” So my word for 2018 is seek. I pray I seek the Lord this year. So often I feel like God is a million miles away, when in reality He is right beside me but I forget to seek His face. I want to seek after my husband, my family, and others in my life. I want to seek God’s face in decisions I make, and I want to seek His love, joy, peace, and forgiveness in my life. So here is to a year of seeking. I am not sure what will be found by the end of these twelve months, but I pray as I blog in the beginning of 2019 that I can say I found some amazing treasures in the Word of God, and in my life that I have taken for granted. I pray this year will be full of blessings and treasures and wild adventures! I love how Ms. Frizzle says it on ‘The Magic School Bus’, “Take chances, make mistakes, and get messy!”

psalm 9-10

Our Christmas Sloth

We have a Christmas tradition in our house that started when I was just a child. Every year my mom would let my brother and I pick out our own Christmas ornaments to hang on the tree. Then when we got married she gave all our ornaments to us. Well I wanted to do this when Jordan and I got married, but I wanted ornaments that reflected the year before. Then Abigail came along and I had to start buying her ornaments too.

I’m usually on top of things – like I know what ornament to get in October, but this year I just couldn’t find the right one for Abigail. I knew I wanted to get her an ornament that represented her getting her little pink glasses. That was a big thing for her this year, and what people know her for. But they don’t sell a lot of ornaments with glasses on them. So my next plan was to buy a pink pair of kids shades and pop the lenses out and tie them to our tree. Well can you say tacky?? Okay, so then I thought I would buy a cute animal ornament that reminded me of Abigail and buy some wire and attach pink glasses to said animal. Now that would be cute I thought, so now what animal reminds me of Abigail? I had no idea. I texted Jordan at work and right about the time he responded I thought about a sloth. Two minutes later he replied with sloth. Wow! We hadn’t even talked about it and we both thought the same thing. So I got on Etsy and found a shop that sold little felt sloths. The owner even put little pink glasses on the sloth after I told her what I wanted. It’s one of my favorite ornaments on our tree now. My little Abigail sloth!


See the similarities between her and the sloth behind her? Such a perfect picture for this!

But why is Abigail like a sloth? I googled sloths and learned some cool facts about them and I have 10 ways Abigail is just like a sloth. They made me laugh so enjoy!! And Merry Christmas…I’ll be here admiring our little sloth ornament.


  • Sloths are slow. Everyone knows that, but what’s is funny is that sloths are pretty useless when they are on the ground. That’s why they stay in the trees all the time, but once a week they have to get down to go to the bathroom and that is when they are most likely to be ate because their long claws that help them navigate the trees, make them obsolete on the ground. Abigail can relate. She is pretty obsolete on the ground too. Sure she can wiggle and pull herself around slowly, but don’t expect her to be winning any marathons with her sloth-like movements.
  • Who has ever seen a picture of an ugly sloth? They are all so cute! And Abigail is no exception to this sloth rule. Everywhere she goes she gets compliments of her beauty.
  • This one made me laugh, but sloths only poop once a week. It has something to do with their slow metabolism. But gosh, we struggle with Abigail’s bowel movements all the time. Since she never is up or moving I swear her little bowels hate her, poor thing.
  • Contrary to popular belief, sloths in the wild don’t really sleep that often. They sleep about 10 hours a day. Abigail also does not sleep that often either. She is getting better in her new bed, but bedtimes are a struggle around here.
  • Sloths can turn their heads like an owl because they are missing two vertebras in their neck, so that makes them pretty flexible. I have never seen a more flexible kid than Abigail. Her PT always says things like I am not sure this is the right way for her to move, but she seems to be able to do it so lets go with it. She can reach the top of their head with her toes. When I put jackets on Abigail I swear I bend her arm backwards, but she doesn’t seem to mind. If she were ever able to I would love to put her in gymnastics!
  • Sloths are not social creatures. They live alone unless it is time to mate. Abigail is social to adults, but not to children. She would be okay being the only kid in the room at all times. Maybe she is just a little jealous of them too.
  • Baby sloths are very attached to their mothers. They stay together up to four years before the baby sloth separates from them. Gosh, I feel for that mom. Abigail and I have a strong attachment. I cannot even leave the room before she starts crying missing me. She literally goes everywhere I go.
  • Sloths are only 25% muscle. I feel like that’s Abigail. Her poor little muscles have caused us issues from day one. Whether it’s her eyes, her legs, or her core it’s all a muscle thing.
  • Sloths are tiny for being mammals. They just don’t get that big, and I don’t think Abigail every will get big either. She has always been in the 5-10 percentile of her weight. And her feet and hands are the tiniest little things.
  • A sloth’s facial coloring makes it look like they are always smiling. And Abigail is always smiling. I don’t know how or why but she is. Even this weekend after throwing up about 8 times in a row she still laughed in the doctor’s office! That’s our little sloth!!

You Would Too

Do you remember that oldies song “It’s my Party”? The lyrics go, “It’s my party and I’ll cry if I want to. You would cry to if it happened to you.” I know it’s a weird connection but that’s the song I thought of as I began to write this blog last night. So many people say how I’m a great mom or how Abigail’s blessed to have me. Maybe I am. Maybe she is. There’s a ton of special needs parents and care givers that are amazing!! I’ve met only a small handful and their stories need to be heard by everyone. Special needs parents are some of the most amazing people I’ve found out. But like the song goes, if you had a special needs kid you’d be pretty amazing too.


Just a few days after we got home from the hospital before we found out about this journey we were about to be on.

Let’s face it. If you’re a parent you are amazing. The responsibility God has given you to raise your child or children is one of the biggest under takings you’ll ever have. You are raising the future in your home right now. It’s huge!! It’s scary!! And often it’s a rollercoaster of emotions. Parenting does not come with rule books and how-to guides. And as soon as you kind of think you have one kid figured out another child comes along who is completely different. Parenting is a privilege and a blessing, but one that should not be taken lightly. So every parent who loves their child unconditionally is amazing in my book!!

But as a special needs parent you just have a few extra responsibilities. You often have a list of doctors to call. Often you have to deal with insurance companies and other financial assistance companies and organizations. You grow to realize there are not a lot of helpful people out there to assist you, so you learn as you go and learn to be assertive and to be your child’s biggest advocate. You are your child’s voice in a medical field, which is often full of people who are just after the next dollar or who think your child isn’t as high a priority. If you had a special needs child you would learn all about the ends and outs of the medical field too.



Then at two months old we got the news about how our perfect little baby may have some vision issues, and our special needs journey began.

A special needs parent often has to be more accommodating and a quick problem solver. A lot of special needs children have physical and social limitations that you have to work around. I know a lot of children with sensory issues who cannot handle loud places, even crowded restaurants. Parents bring noise canceling headphones to help them in those situations. For us, Abigail cannot sit up. For the longest time we carried our own chair for her to sit in when we went out. Now she is stable enough to sit in high chairs at restaurants. But often the hostess will not ask us what we need, so she will get a booster seat for the booth. Abigail cannot sit in a booster seat because she would slide right out. So then I have to go chase down someone to replace the seat with a high chair. It’s a mess. But if your were a special needs parent you would learn to accommodate in a world that is not often accommodating to people with special needs.

Often a special needs parent has to deal with medical issues with their child. Whether it is seizures, a g-tube, or a host of other symptoms, parents have to walk through these scary things with their child. Not to mention the surgeries that often come with these medical issues. We have been blessed not to experience any medical issues with Abigail, but I have talked to many a mother who has and it is always an awful part of their story. One mom even said they feel as if they are going through it with their child. As moms we are often more scared and hurt and worried about our children than they are. But if you were a special needs parent you would do all this too if you knew it was best for your child.



While we don’t have any medical issues, Abigail has done a lot of testing. This was taken at the lab while we waited for her blood to be drawn for about the fourth time. I was over it – she was as happy as ever.

Often as a special needs parent you have to help your child in ways you don’t expect or teach them things that should come naturally. They are much more dependent on you. Special needs children need help doing even simple things like getting dressed and using the bathroom. I still have to feed Abigail all her meals and give her every sip of water or juice she drinks. We aren’t even considering potty training, and diapers may be forever in our future. We still carry Abigail everywhere she goes. I have to teach her how to play with new toys and how her hand can make a fist. But if you were a special needs parent you would do all this too.

Lastly, often our dreams and expectations of our children crumble before our eyes. No one plans to have a child born with autism or Downs or a genetic disorder. Often parents do not know anything is the matter with their child until they are months, if not years old. So by that time you have planned for them to be your older child’s best friend, or a star athletic or a well-known doctor. Every parent dreams about their child’s future. And often as a special needs parent these dreams are broken as diagnoses come along. But that doesn’t mean we don’t dream. It is just that our dreams and goals are very different. My dreams for Abigail has changed dramatically in the last few years. Now I want her to be able to walk, to have accepting friends and amazing teachers and doctors. Things I would just take for granted when I was pregnant with her. But if you were a special needs parent your would adapt your dreams and expectations too.

The fact is that I am not anything special. God didn’t gift me with any extra abilities to care for my daughter. I am not amazing in any way. In fact I mess up a lot. I am lazy and don’t do everything I should. I don’t want to deal with doctors so I don’t call all the time when I should. I want to do my thing sometimes and not spend every waking moment helping Abigail. I am selfish. But I am a mother of a special needs daughter, and I will do anything I can to help her achieve her very best. Yes, we have to do things a little differently, but this is my normal. Abigail is my normal because I have no other typical child to compare her to. I would be scared to be around typical toddlers because I don’t know what they do. Around here we just take one day at a time and enjoy the small victories. I am thankful for my daughter and for being allowed to be her mom. Abigail teaches me more than I ever thought she could. Her joy and determination are contagious!! I am thankful to be on this journey with her and if you were a parent of a special needs child you would be blessed in ways you couldn’t imagine too!!