I always tell people that, for me, being the parent of a limb different child is NOT hard. But you know what, it is. Its so hard. Sometimes I just want to go hide in my closet and cry. Sometimes I want to delete all of my social media and live my life like I have never posted a photo or video of my child on the internet. Sometimes I just want to take my child, run away, and live on a deserted island. But not for the reasons you may think.
I know a lot of people pity us. They think of what our day to day is like- the hard task of taking care of a disabled child. Having to do literally everything for him. Having to build our schedules around his oh so high needs. But our day is not like that at all.
Every morning I wake up and get Camden and Ryleigh out of their beds. They both go to the living room on their own. I make them breakfast and they sit there together, without me, and eat. I clean up their areas and they go on to play, without me. Most of my involvement with them during the day is giving them something to eat and drink, telling them to stop beating up each other, answering all 3584 questions they have, teaching them new things, helping them BOTH to the potty, singing songs with them, and giving them hugs and kisses when they need them.
What makes being the parent of a limb different child hard is all of the people talking about how hard and difficult our lives must be and how terrible Camden’s life is going to be as he grows up. I get called ignorant all of the time. I get told that I should’ve aborted him while I had the chance. People say they hope something happens to him and he dies before he has to learn how cruel this world is. And they said all of those things after watching a video of Camden’s biggest accomplishment- him learning how to walk for the very first time.
But you know what? Camden’s life will not be terrible. We have been raising him to be STRONG, INDEPENDENT, CONFIDENT, FORGIVING, LOVING.
Do you know what Camden does when he falls down? He laughs and gets back up.
Do you know what Camden does when he tries something new and doesn’t get it the first time? He tries again.
Do you know what Camden does when he looks at himself in the mirror? He talks about how handsome he is.
Do you know what Camden says when he is in his room all by himself? “I like that God made me.”
And you know what I will teach him to do when he sees and hears all of the hateful things people have to say? I will teach him to forgive them, because THEY are ignorant. I will teach him to keep going on and show the world that he has no limitations. I will teach him that even if someone doesn’t love him for who he is, he is to love them anyways because they need the love a lot more than he does.
I wouldn’t have to teach Camden those things if people would just treat him like a human being. And that breaks my heart. It makes being a parent so hard. All I can do is pray that Camden keeps God right by his side and that what me and his daddy teach him stays in his mind and these people wont MAKE his life hard, like they make my parenting.
And as hard as being a parent of a limb different child is, it is SO worth it and SO rewarding. We are so blessed that we get to guide Camden and witness the amazing things he will do in his life.