Finding the Balance

I remember when our oldest son Cooper started disliking a lot of activities.

It didn’t happen overnight. More like an evolution over months.

He was 18 months. And refused to go outside. He looked at the world as a foreign place.

But because he was little, we could still go places. But as he aged, it became nearly impossible. Until, we couldn’t really go anywhere at all.

We learned that he loves being home. He loves being warm and cozy and snuggling under 7 fuzzy blankets.

He likes watching The Price is Right and having a snack and taking an afternoon nap.

He likes being with his family. And doing his puzzles and watching out the window.

He does not like to be cold. He does not like lines. Or crowds. Or trying new things.

As his parents we’ve learned when to push and encourage and when to let him live happily in his bubble where he feels safe. It feels like a tightrope some days.

In the beginning, his dad and I felt pulled between two different worlds. One with sledding, hockey, baseball, and birthday parties and Cooper’s safe and secure world.

A world outside our home and a world inside of it.

There were very hard years. There was a feeling of missing out. Even some resentment and jealousy. There was taking turns going places, a lot of photos shared between us, and trying to figure out how to be everywhere at once.

The boys are 10, 7 and 2 now. And I like to think we’ve found the balance we strived for in the beginning.

We’ve found what works for us.

Like flooding a small pond behind our house so two of the boys can skate with friends while Cooper is safe and content inside.

I think it’s called balance. But it’s also being creative too. Most typical outings don’t work for our family. So we try to find things that do.

And tomorrow, Cooper is going to try sledding. We are going to bundle him him and take him out. Because, well, we try things in this house.

He may last 5 minutes…but it will be 5 minutes of our family together. And that’s what matters.

My advice is to always get creative. Try. Push when you can. Pull back when you need too. And try again. Always try again.

Finding Cooper’s Voice is a safe, humorous, caring and honest place where you can celebrate the unique challenges of parenting a special needs child. Because you’re never alone in the struggles you face. And once you find your people, your allies, your village….all the challenges and struggles will seem just a little bit easier. Welcome to our journey. You can also follow us on Facebook, subscribe for exclusive videos, and subscribe to our newsletter.

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Finding Cooper's Voice is a safe, humorous, caring and honest place where you can celebrate the unique challenges of parenting a special needs child. Because you're never alone in the struggles you face. And once you find your people, your allies, your village....all the challenges and struggles will seem just a little bit easier. Welcome to my page!

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