Sunday, November 13, 2011

A Matter of Perspective...

I have been working with a student that is probably one of the top 10 most challenging children that I have ever worked with. His language is non-existent. He cannot follow even the simplest one step command so his behavior appears poor. His comprehension and capacity for learning seems very low. Although he is much older, he functions at about the 9-12 month level. Even after years of trying, he is not potty trained. He bolts without much warning and has no danger sense. He bangs his head when he is upset- so much that he will make himself bleed or bruise. He eats non-food things like sand and crayons if not watched carefully.

I met his mother the other day. She was very nice. Both mother and son are beautiful. He has her eyes and good complexion. She noticed another child that was in the building. The other child was in a walker and had obvious physical limitations. The Mother shook her head in a pitying way and told me how grateful she was that her son was mobile.

Since I know both of these children, that comment surprised me. The child with the walker is bright. That child is progressing rapidly, becoming more independent, making friends, and will, in time, be able to do most things by himself. This mother will probably always need to care for her son.

It must be true that God only gives us what we can handle and that everyone sees things differently. I remember seeing my children in the hospital for the first time and knowing… without a doubt, knowing that mine was the best. Of all those babies in their little bassinets I got the best one. Every time! To this day they are still the best ones of all the ones I could have gotten.

One thing I used to tell parents when I had to break the news to them that their child was eligible for special education services was that EVERY child had issues. No child was perfect. They were lucky that they now KNEW what their child was going to struggle with and they could deal with it. I hope it brought them comfort.

As I watched this boy and his mother head out the door they did do very well together. She gave him boundaries and expectations he could handle and he seemed to sense how much space she was comfortable with giving him. I am glad this Mother feels she got the best one. He will need her love and support for a long time.


  1. It is always a matter of perspective in our field. Love to hear that parents out there see the best in their kids and it is refreshing to know she feels grateful for even the smallest things he can do!!!

  2. Oh here ya go making me cry first thing in the morning! Great post, and so true. p.s. I have the best kids.... =)