May 9, 2016

Moving and Shaking

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Look at her go! I'm so proud of her! I've been doing a lot of soul searching lately, and realizing (and admitting) that I too often project my emotions on to my daughter. Experiences I went through as a child- hurtful words, sad feelings, they are all a part of me, and I re-experience them when I see Anna in a situation that triggers those emotions. But Anna is not me. She reacts to things differently than I did, she will remember different things than I did, and she will likely bounce back from things more easily than I did (that is, if we are parenting as we hope to). Any parent knows that seeing your child be rejected, disappointed, or fail is heart-wrenching. For me, I've let it upset me TOO much. Worried about it TOO much. Because I bring my own baggage. I'm working to admit that many times, I'm the one who is most upset about something, not her. I worry more about what others will think, not her. I worry that her feelings are hurt and she will be scarred forever, whereas she is over it and moving on to the next thing. For a parent with a child with a disability, these tendencies seem to be further magnified. It's important to realize that our children are not us. Let's allow them a fresh start, a clean slate. Let's acknowledge our own feelings when they come up, put them in their place, and then be the encourager and supporter that our children need us to be.