6 Possible Reasons “Why” Do We Have Special Children?
From my personal experience and working with parents, I know that the question “Why me and why my child” is the most common one asked at the beginning of our special journey. It’s because we are so shaken by the shock of not becoming the “perfect” child, and we just can’t accept. At least not right away.
The parent who wants to live a happy life and cares about their child’s well-being starts to work on themselves and soon realizes that “Why me” is a pointless question that leads nowhere. They soon realize that real peace, happens, and joy lies in the answer of the questions “Who am I and what do I learn from this experience?” and “What is the best I can do in this situation” and “Who is my child and what it teaches me?”. But that is an article for another time.
Our topic today is to try to answer all the possible reasons why our children came with challenges?
1. To experience unconditional love.
Many parents rush to say that they love their children unconditionally. Every parent in the world would say, “O, I love my child, unconditionally.” But is that really the truth? Unconditional love means supporting and accepting the child as a person entirely no matter their choices.
That means accepting if the child doesn’t want to go to college or is homosexual. Or if it chooses not to marry and have children or make whatever other life choices. Parents who can’t accept all these things usually criticize and impose opinions and desires on their children. And if the children don’t obey, they go on with critics and disapproval. But that is not unconditional love. That is, “I will love you if you be who I want you to be.”
Special children are blessed with unconditional love. If the parent manages to get out of self-pity and impression of a broken life, feeling stuck, despair, punishment -and all that, they can accept completely. And from then on, they can unconditionally love their child. No expectations, no pushing to do this or that. No pressures, just pure love.
2. To experience the strength we have, but we weren’t aware of it.
You never know how strong you are until being strong is the only choice you have, right?
Special parents undeniably have this amazing strength and will inside them that they do and achieve things they never thought they could before. It’s coming from the adrenaline of the emergency of the situation. They think of solutions, organize trips to different hospitals in different cities, pulling the impossible, figuring out ways, finances, resources, and possibilities.
I found myself many times in situations when I successfully arranged trips or medical check-up or flying somewhere with Joana – and I thought, “Wow, I can’t believe I did that.”
Sitting in a comfort zone with predictable every day doesn’t push you forward. It doesn’t bring you ideas, possible solutions, and possibilities in general. But being in an emergency – which is the whole process of taking care of a special child, does bring you all that. So, “Why me?” maybe leads you to the answer “To see who you truly are and what you can accomplish.”
3. To continue to educate ourselves
To find out that parenting, it’s not really about our children; it’s about ourselves. We have childhood programs, and we act on them in every area and aspect of our lives. If we look at our career and financial situation, relationships, and achievements – they all perfectly correlate with our thoughts. They reflect our programs about that particular thing.
If we think that we can’t have enough money and our life is a constant struggle, we will experience exactly what we believe. If we believe that marriage or partnership is hard, there is no chance we can experience a harmonic relationship. If we think life is all abbot constant fight and suffering – evidence will show up from every corner that it is true.
On the other hand, if we think we are capable and can achieve anything and hold that thought in everything we do- there is no doubt that we will succeed.
How is this related to parenting? In every way possible.
When we become parents wanted or not, we project everything we are on our children. All of the expectations for our children to be polite, have education, have hobbies, learn languages, play sports, go to college, be the best, be perfect and not too loud, not too quiet, be respectful, know better etc., all of it, comes from us, the parents. We want all that for them because we are thinking that without grandiose achievements, we worth nothing. That’s why rebellion happens even at the youngest age because our children’s personal desires don’t always match with their spirit and desires in this life.
I recommend you to find Dr. Shefali on YouTube and hear her speeches regarding conscious parenting. She says, and that deeply resonates with me, that our healing process and development of our personality begin even when we become parents.
A parent should work only on themselves and not try to shape a child’s personality. A smart parent learns about mindfulness and being present at the moment. Knows that when the child is making a mess and the parent gets frustrated because of that, that has to do with their (the parents) programs and ideas that life should be only clean, organized, predictable, controlled, and in perfect order. They learn that when the child is crying and screaming, they should offer love and care but not manically try to calm it down. The screaming child doesn’t mean parents’ failure.
Parents who educate themselves on parenting gain wisdom that the child is its own entity and builds its own personality. The parent here takes a mentor role and focuses on giving enough love and support to their child. Instead of providing a sterile environment where their child will be constantly happy, they should explain that life is not pink all the time. Besides all the positive things that can happen like friends, joy, rewards, adventures, beautiful travels… there are also rejection (possible from other children), there are different characters and opinions, there are losses, and there is physical pain like when they fall down. Life is not all about being in a 100% happy place all the time. It’s about balance.
Now we can come to special parenting. First of all, when the child has mental and physical challenges, 100% of the parents are shocked, grieving, frustrated, and out of balance. No exceptions. Now, remember what I already wrote: we carry programs and ideas that we are entitled to experience only good in life. And then a child “with a problem” comes, and we think of ourselves as losers, as failures, as trouble and unworthiness. What do we do? Are we staying in this place?
I don’t know one person who wants that. Of course, we want to go on, see the beauty in life with all the challenges it caries, and be in peace and joy. And how to do that?
By learning that we need to let our children be who they want to be and appreciate them from where they are, and work on ourselves. Our children have strong spirits and their own connection with life, their experiences, and God. We are responsible for changing our perspective and stop seeing them as broken, damaged, and limited.
A possible reason why they came as they are is to help us heal emotionally from our childhood’s programs. Because if we, the special parents, don’t work on ourselves and start personal development, we can do nothing else. We can’t do anything for our special children.
Can you teach a special child to behave or to teach it a lesson about respect? Can you make a special child clean their room and throw the garbage on your schedule? Can you force a special child to study hard and go to college? No, you can’t.
Special parents can’t project their expectations and desires on their children even if they want to. The only thing they can do is just let them be. And then we learn how to just be. Just be. Not trying too hard around anything.
Because if we embrace that, we will realize that we don’t need to achieve more and more to prove that we are worthy and enough. Tell me if there is a bigger blessing than this. And the best part is when you learn that living in the moment and just be, makes you enough, then amazing things start to happen. Then you start to get to know yourself better, new ideas come, and you are in “the new” you and become fearless.
4. To experience life from another perspective
Now you know that there is no one type of “normal.” Now you know that everybody’s life is normal and no one gets to decide in general. I know you wanted a healthy child with a predictable future. But instead, you’ve got a special child who you love more than anything in the world and who show you how unconditional love looks like. And you know the story about Rome and Amsterdam, right?
Life is not supposed to be all roses and flat roads. There is beauty in its challenges too if you embrace them and don’t resist. If you surrender and really accept special parenting, you will find yourself on a wonderful journey and memorable adventures. You will grow so much because you will succeed in overcoming your limiting believes, like “Only normal parenting is worthy.”
5. To find out that there is a way for happiness even in a challenging situation
You will learn this lesson when you are done with the process of grieving, feeling frustrated, and feeling like you are living in a nightmare. Of course, in the beginning, you will find yourself in denial, anger, shock, fear, and worry about your child’s life and yours as well. For some parents, this happens sooner, for some after several years. I know now that happiness is possible in every life situation because I live that on my personal example. It took me almost 4 years to be where I am now, and I am telling you that it was worth it.
If I can go back, I would do everything I did in the past two years, but I would have done it sooner. I would hire a life coach and start reading books that show me different perspectives, like the book Man search for meaning from Victor Frankl. I would create a morning routine that I now know it brings me clarity, focus, and enough energy for the day. Special parenting didn’t change me, but it showed me that I can be better, bigger, and more mindful. It taught me how to enjoy the moment and appreciate all the beauties of life.
6. To inspire others and bring them consolation that they are not alone.
When you see someone who (from your point of view) is in a challenging situation and lives a hard life – you think, “Wow, how can they live with that? I admire them so much, and I am so impressed.” But for the person actually living it – it’s not so impossible.
However, there is nothing wrong with finding inspiration in others. It will be so nice if all the people just inspire each other all the time because the truth is, we can learn something from each person we come across. I admit that special parents have something in their courage and determination to succeed and provide better care for their children. So, my last answer to the question “Why” is that the special parents’ purpose is to inspire others around them. They can inspire someone to take action or not to use excuses anymore. Because, if they can do something – everyone else can do that to…