Different Dream is happy to welcome Amy Felix into its guest blogger fold. Like many of us, she feels unqualified for special needs motherhood. And yet as mom to 4 kids, 3 of whom have special needs, she’s come to grips with her assignment. Today, she outlines the path that led to acceptance and confidence in her unexpected role.
I’ve always felt wholly unqualified for special needs motherhood. Then came diagnosis day and “unqualified” felt like an understatement.
It rocked my world and left me scrambling to learn more, understand more, and BE more. Not long after, came another diagnosis for another of my children…and then another. Of my four children, two have autism and one has ADHD. Most days, I find it truly a challenge to get out of bed in the morning. Though I thought this feeling was just a passing phase, it’s become a part of me; this bone-tired, soul-weary ache. I often find myself feeling completely and utterly overwhelmed; as if, no matter what I do or how hard I try, I’m just never enough.
I’m not one to question God very often. After all, He’s God and I’m not. I know that He’s cradling my world in His very capable hands, yet, He chose me to parent these children.
There’s a part of my mind that can’t help but question why. How could he look at me, at the overall mess that I am, and decide that I’m capable of raising these incredibly unique and mysterious little people?
One of the tragically beautiful parts of special needs parenting is the way it forces you to face who you truly are. Many times, your weaknesses take center stage and you are brought to your knees by the reality of your own flawed humanness. You discover that you can do much more than you ever thought you could, but you also learn that you can’t do many of the things you thought would come naturally. Self-doubt creeps in so easily, especially in the moments when you feel helpless. For me, those moments come much more often than I ever imagined they would.
Parenting children with special needs, if I’m honest, is not the path I would have chosen for myself. Heading into this journey, I knew from experience how wide and deep and long the battle road for everyone involved. I knew it could take me down if I let it, and I didn’t see how it was possible that I could be all that my children would need me to be. Now that the road I’m on is more familiar, I know that I was right.
On my own, I am unqualified.
Yet, that doesn’t defeat me, because this journey has proven that there is no limit to what God can do through me. There is no amount of dysfunction or uncertainty that scares Him off. There is nothing He can’t use for His glory. Who I am, special needs parent or otherwise, is not defined by the mess I see when I look in the mirror…it’s defined by The One who holds my heart. The One who created my children designed me to be their mother in partnership with Him- the most capable, qualified Parent of them all. This calling may mean that I’ll always be bone-tired or overwhelmed, but I’ll never be alone, never without hope, even when I feel unqualified for special needs motherhood…
…and neither will you.
My name is Amy Felix. I’ve been married for 10 years to a guy who’s totally out of my league. I’m a homeschooling mom to 4 kids, ranging in age from 9 to 2 years. That’s really enough work on it’s own but, because I love it, I’m a photographer as well. And, in my spare time, I write. My faith is the driving force behind my special needs blog: Appointed To Hope. I’m a firm believer in being real, transparent, and using the gifts of this journey as a way to relate to others in their joy as well as their sorrow. To read more about my adventures in special needs parenting, visit my website at www.appointedtohope.com.
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