The Wood from the Trees

Sometimes, I just can’t see … the wood from the trees.

I know it’s not just ‘a thing’ for parents with a SEN child, because we all get caught up so badly in the moment, we are too emotionally involved to see the bigger picture.

My vision definitely hazes more often than not and I’m pretty sure that having to parent at the extreme certainly propels you into this void far quicker.

It can make you feel like you are always on the brim of perpetual doom.

We have too many battles to fight with those on the outside, and by living it on the inside – it sends our judgement skills a bit out of sync.

Just like our kids, our glasses are full to the brim with the anxiety it brings us as parents, so it doesn’t take much to spill us over the edge.

But to quote the words of Stanley Kubrick: “however vast the darkness, we must supply our own Light.”

It is extremely difficult to be the source of your own positive belief system when your energy is zapped and you have experienced so many negative encounters.

So, how do we remind ourselves of how far we have come?

I need to be able to stand in a wood and no longer be confounded when I try to decipher the trees.

Because right now I certainly can’t do that.

For every step we make moving forwards I seem to give more impetus to the ones that set us back.

And once I start thinking negatively, then we all snowball.

Then I can’t parent the PDA way and I lose control.

Add to the mix if I shout at sibling when really she has endured a lot and should be able to tantrum like other kids do. The guilt and self-doubt seep in and I’m left, crushed, feeling like an even more inadequate parent.

It’s scary you know, handing your PDA child over to other people, knowing that it’s highly likely they will witness the worst side of her and to trust that no long-lasting damage will happen as a result.

One of the most provocative behaviours she has picked up at the moment, when in fight mode, is spitting.

Actually it’s far more venomous when she does it in attack, it’s more like ‘gobbing’ and people react by telling her how disgusting she is.

When told ‘no’ she certainly spits at you.

If it’s time to finish something she’s not ready to stop, again she spits at you.

If someone has come near her and it has made her feel out of control, yes you guessed it, she starts spitting.

To new people they will judge this communication and continue to make a judgment on bias.

They witness the feral exterior and lose any possibility to tune into the internal.

I know in my heart there will always be negative people she encounters who will question why does she deserve a chance.

Her behaviour will prevent them from seeing the girl.

The more they stare, the more they retaliate to her way of communicating, the more times I get asked “are you The Mum,” will continue to fog my ability in seeing the clearer picture.

But as Gandhi put it: “I will not let anyone walk through my mind with their dirty feet.”

I know I need to supply my own light force to keep us moving forward.

And then when that light shines clearly there will be no reason why I can’t detect the wood from the trees.

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