It’s easy to worry about whether the plan for your child is the right one. Will this be the right school, therapy, or path? The problem lies in the fact that as your child grows and life changes their needs are going to change as well.
You will never truly know whether the choice you made for your child is gong to take them 10 steps forward or 5 steps back. The fear of this can be downright paralyzing to us as parents. The hard truth is that we aren’t always going to get it right. We desperately want to, but we can analyze something until someone figures out how to lasso the moon and the outcome will still be as unpredictable.
I am not saying that research or doing your due diligence isn’t necessary, because it is a crucial part of the decision making process. It’s just that after enough Google work, online chats, and talking to different professionals your head is left feeling like it is going to spin right off your neck.
Everyone has a different child, opinion, or experience and it can feel like the world is playing a giant came of tug-o-war with your brain. Ironically I think it feels a bit like sensory overload. It is unpleasant, overwhelming, and can add a lot of stress to an already stressful situation.
The one thing I have learned, which I have to remind myself constantly, is to just breathe! All I can do as a parent is watch my child by constantly reevaluating their current needs, and do everything I can to keep them safe and guard their best interests, hearts, and needs. I have to remember that I am doing the best I can, think about how much the decisions I have already made have helped my children progress, and simply just jump!
Between limited therapist availability, location of services, other family members needs, your own needs (can’t forget about those), multiple opinions, finances, scheduling issues, and everything else that comes into play it can feel like you are standing at the edge of a cliff and you can’t tell how deep the water is beneath. The real risk in the fact that you will never know how deep it is until you jump.
Now these types of parenting decisions are hardly life or death, and if you are cliff jumping I sure hope you are doing it with a guide that knows his/her stuff. Even so, just because someone tells you that the water is deep enough doesn’t take away your own fear that you have to be the one to jump off the cliff and truly find out.
Just remember that at the end of the day the only way to find out if something will work or not is to have faith, close your eyes, and jump. After all, if you are still stuck standing paralyzed by fear of choice nothing in your current situation will change.
I know first hand how hard this can be. I know the tears and the fears that come with it, but sometimes I truly believe that the best thing you can do, even if the choice doesn’t end up right, is to jump and at least find out. You are a loving parent doing your best, and in order for that to keep happening your children needs you to leap off the edge of that cliff.
By Jessica Nieminski