Siblings Of Kids With Special Needs
Siblings of children with disabilities are very special individuals. They are exposed to a life that the majority of kids will never know. They see their parents go through physical and emotional distress dealing with incredibly difficult situations and decisions. These kids are often shuffled off in tow to doctors and physical therapy appointments, hospital visits and equipment fittings. In the same trip, they may also have a play date and birthday party to attend. Holidays are typically celebrated at home or very near by while friends are flying or traveling long distances to celebrate with relatives. Vacations as a family can often last for only a long weekend since leaving the security and comfort of home can test the patience of even the most seasoned parents.
These children tend to think of the abnormal as normal. They are remarkable and develop an understanding for a part of life that is seldom in the public spotlight. At times, some rebel because the desire for a conventional life is so great. Often their characters glow with empathy and acceptance that is nearly impossible to teach unless lived first hand. They tend to spend an abundance of time with grandparents and other relatives, learn the importance of family support at a very early age and are able to make a positive impact on other kids and adults by sharing their experiences.
I consider these amazing siblings as the unsung heroes of families dealing with a special needs child. Aside from being a caring and considerate brother or sister, they remind parents of what it is like to raise a typical child. Over the years, our daughter Hailey has made us laugh many times after we have just finished crying. She has always been there to pick us up when we have been down. She does not judge Olivia nor feel that Olivia is different in any way. She only knows Olivia as the best sister in the world and she tells her that on a regular basis.
The video I am sharing illustrates the theme of this blog. It shows a young boy singing about his sister who has Down Syndrome. He is wise beyond his years, truly inspirational and is a model for us all to follow.
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Thank you for this post; so well written and exactly the thoughts I think about my own situation. My son is 7 and has special needs; my daughter is 6 and typically developing and has had to go through so much...through every single thing you have written in your post. I have just made my very first post on my own blog and will be writing about my daughter and her relationship with her brother in a couple of weeks. I hope you can check it out when you get a chance: http://www.notjustanyone.org
Yes, I love the idea of siblings being unsung heroes. My oldest son is an amazing, compassionate 7 year old and went through so much as a toddler when his brother was born. I couldn't be prouder of him! alanaterry.blogspot.com