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Friday, April 5, 2013

There are no roadmaps


I have been asked the question many times, “Will Hunter ever be able to live a ‘normal’ life?”  I have asked myself the same question, so I answer truthfully, “I don’t know.” All parents have concerns for our kids.  We all wonder if their lives will turn out as they wish.  We all want our children to be healthy and happy.  As a parent of a child on the spectrum, my worries are constant reminders of the long-term ramifications this disorder can have on his life.

I wonder daily if Hunter will ever drive a car, pass high school, get married or have children.  I wonder if he will ever be able to hold a long-term job.  I worry that he will never truly find happiness because his unrealistic expectations will never come true.  These worries are real and they are never ending.

I wake up every day and put on my “fix-it” hat. I take him to therapy.  I email constantly with his teachers.  I work through the grueling homework every single night.  I try to keep my calm and breathe through whatever obstacles each day will bring.  I do this every day with the hope that I am helping him, in some way, to reach his dreams and lead a “normal” life. 

The problem with every child is that there are no roadmaps; there are no GPS systems to tell you when you have taken the wrong road.  All you can do is try your best and hope and pray that you are on the right path. With a child on the spectrum, there are new roads popping up every day, and no GPS could keep up with the constant and every changing winding roads that are thrown your way.  

Will Hunter every lead a normal life?  I wish I had the perfect answer to that question. What I do know, is that I have hope and that will never be lost. I have days when I feel like this mountain is too steep, and I just can’t keep going, but truthfully, I know that is not an option.  I know that I have to keep working and praying. What I know is that someday, when I look back on this journey of raising him, I will know that I tried my very best.  Maybe my best will have been enough, I hope so!