As parents, whether you have a child with special needs or not, let’s face it. We’re ALL busy, all day, every day. Most of us long for a vacation, a day off, an afternoon to relax, or heck, just five minutes alone. So, while your experiences may be WAY different than mine, it’s just, my take on things. Your stress, anxiety and maniacal life experience may vary!
Just back away from the messy room and
no one gets hurt nothing gets accomplished
Have you ever had that experience when, you walk into that one room or area in your home that always seems to be a hot spot, or a messy place you never seem to get under control? You know that time is going to come when you’re going to sit down, tackle that mess and turn it into a corner of efficiency. Yeah, maybe tomorrow. But sometimes you just walk up and take a look and just think screw it…I can’t handle this today. I have a long term relationship like this with my to-do list.
The bills don’t pay themselves
Like you, I have to process the monthly bills, visit the food store, get gas, get children ready for school, do laundry, dishes, cleaning, etc etc ETC! There doesn’t seem enough hours in most days to get it done and when you finally have the time to sit down, you want to rest. In my case, my upcoming week is simply so overwhelming and I’m trying to figure out how to handle it all. I’m thinking at this point that I’m going to have to succumb to a checklist. I use them from time to time when I have a lot of unusual things to pick up at the store or I need measurements for something, but I truly abhor them for some reason. It makes me realize just how much I have to do and I think that’s why I don’t like having them.
Honey, we’ve ALL got problems!
Two of the most major issues I have facing me are 1) My son’s medical insurance has been canceled. Not because I didn’t do what I was supposed to, but because I have been unable to get anyone from the insurance office to call me back after making five documented phone calls in FOUR WEEKS. In the last call, I begged them to call me back. Then 2) There is a looming transition to middle school meeting for my fifth grade daughter for whom I have been battling her school to properly diagnose her (three years and counting). They keep passing her, even though she has failed, now approaching the second time. The meeting IS going to be filled with stress and strife. Also, I have a sixteen page HANDWRITTEN package to fill out regarding my son’s disabilities and to help get him services since they cut him off with no supports on the day he turned 18. No ceremony, just a letter stating that everything was ending, wishing us luck in our future. I’m pretty much used to most of these occurrences, but they are tiring. Juggling so many things at once, without any real support since you are the only one who can handle these things, well, frankly, gets old after almost 20 years. I would love to make some connections in the Autism and Disability community, but like my earlier post about being alone in a world full of people dealing with the same issues, but the question is how?
So, whether you are a working mom, SAHM, little bit of both, dealing with the unique needs of being a parent to someone with special needs, there are a LOT of sites out there where people laugh, comment, then click away to another site, but what my hopes and dreams are built around is the concept of there being real awareness, real cohesion, actual help and places where people can truly share their success (and trials!) with making it all come together. I know I can’t be alone wanting this. We are a widely scattered community, but a community in need of ideas that work. For me, I’ve tried a few things just here at home that have helped to put me on a better track:
Some suggestions that have worked for me
A file cabinet, with folders for each child and each general category (medical, Social Security, important receipts etc)
An app (like One Note) that is free and will sync to your devices. Create a list at home and pull it up on your phone in the store.
Purchase a good all-in-one copy machine that can scan, copy and fax. I can’t tell you how many times being able to send and receive faxes has helped me.
Write down notes during conversations including the date and time of call, the person you spoke with and notes about the call, including follow up notes
So, while I have a long way to go and always seem to be on a journey to get all these things under control, these are a few ideas I’ve come up with to help me cope with a lot of the work I have to do to keep my children’s education, services, medications etc in line and current. I’d love to hear your ideas!