Tuesday, May 8, 2012

I am the mom to two amazing little guys, both have Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD). Of course, since I have two little guys I couldn't make it easy on myself and have them both exhibit the same kinds of behaviors.  Nope, that would be way too easy!

I have twins who are total opposites on their sensory processing.  In our world one is known as a seeker and the other an avoider.  Oh fun. The last five years have been filled with many, many "I want to pull my hair out" kinds of moments.  I think my biggest frustration is that people don't understand.  Family, friends, teachers, heck...even strangers.  Some days it's enough to make you just want to throw your hands up and run screaming from the building.  But then one of them does something wonderfully sweet or amazing in my eyes and all is well with the world again.

Oh, and another very frustrating thing is when you talk to parents of both multiples and non-mulitples alike really, and you say your kids are totally opposite when you are speaking of their SPD needs, they always have to chime in, "Oh, my kids are total opposites too.  Isn't that so funny how that happens?" Ugh, if one more person says that to me I may punch them in the face. Seriously. I am not talking about their personalities here...I am talking about their specific sensory needs.  When you have one that can't get enough stimulation and one that everything in the world over stimulates it makes for one interesting day.  Heck, one interesting hour most days!  So no, I don't want to hear that your kids are opposite too!

One of the hardest things to deal with as the parent of an SPD child(ren) is the looks and even words of disapproval at your parenting skills.  Words, whether actually spoken or implied are cutting and make you often question yourself.  Is this all in your head? Am I making this worse because I am a bad parent? Are they right? Oh man, when you finally meet someone who "gets" it you feel like a million bucks! I will never forget at my children's 4 year check up finally feeling like I was a decent mom. I had spent the previous 3 years trying to get our pediatrician, husband, family, friends to understand what was going on with my kids.  I felt like the world was against me and I was all alone. As I sat in this new pediatricians office and he spoke the words, "I believe we have some sensory integration issues going on here" I just wanted to cry.  I actually wanted to jump up and give him a big old hug to be honest. He even went on to complete my thoughts later in the conversation and said I felt like an "island, all alone out there." Oh my gosh...who are you and why couldn't I have moved here sooner so I could have found you? All the time I had wasted. I had such a huge mix of emotions.  I was just thankful to have found someone who understood!