Living Outside the Box
You may think I’m a contradiction.
I listen to the Grateful Dead, I buy only organic when I can, I vote conservative.
I don’t wear makeup, I buy expensive shampoo, I owned a Bugaboo and I buy most of my clothes at Target.
I read my bible everyday, old and new Testament, I am Jewish.
I live in a community with one of the best school districts in Illinois, one that I am a product of, and I am homeschooling.
I went to four different universities in six years and changed my major five times. I have been a jock, a punk rocker, a deadhead, an artist and a yuppie. I still play my flute.
I read a book a week alternating between chic-lit and sci-fi/fantasy. I will not read a tear jerker or a Pulitzer prize winner, nor go to a movie that is not funny in some way. However, in my life I tend to be the serious one, even controlling at times.
I believe all of these things are not contradictions; they are the perfect pieces of a whole, true person, who makes decisions for herself. It is precisely this diversity that makes me a good parent.
I have also had my share of adversity.
I’ve struggled with infertility and dealt with the physical and emotional pain that caused. I have experienced the joy of motherhood through the miracle of adoption, but not without having a failed adoption first.
I have had to deal with a laundry list of unexpected hurdles when it came to raising my most wondrous child. Life threatening food allergies, environmental allergies, cold urticaria (allergy to the cold), Cholinergic urticaria (allergy to heat), severe eczema, asthma, sensory processing disorder and a large movement Tic Disorder. But please, don’t misunderstand, the greatest joy and blessing in my life is this beautiful son of mine. He could not be any more normal or perfect with or without all of these labels.
These are the things, these quirks, that make him who he is. And these are the challenges that have forced me to be an exemplary parent. I have been forced to think for myself, which has meant thinking outside the box.
The more I thought about what my daily life entails, the more I realized I have an awful lot to share with so many parents facing one, or all, or more of the things I have had to face day-to-day. There is so much to learn and share.
I am tolerant of all views, although I am not tolerant of people who create drama with their children to bring attention to themselves. We need to be strong for our children.
Your job is to be your child’s best and loudest advocate, to be the parent your child needs you to be. If you need someone to help you realize that person inside, share here. I am that person – the person who will not judge, who will be opinionated and who will help you be the best advocate you can.