When my middle son was born, he was rushed to NICU due to the amount of fluid in his lungs. Throughout his life, he has been susceptible to poor health. He would miss tons of school, even field trips and class parties, because he was so sick. My husband and I had to take special precautions with him, being careful as to how often he played outside, which family members we visited, and whether it would be best to just stay at home. My son didn’t seem to mind. He’s a homebody just like his mama. However, my oldest son struggled with this. He felt like we favored his bother over him, and we just weren’t fair.
That was hard to hear, but I’m so thankful that my son was honest with us about his feelings. It explained a lot of his behaviors. We were able to explain things to our oldest son, who didn’t realize the seriousness of his brother’s health.
Being up late at night and early in the morning with little sleep in between taking care of a sick child is difficult. It will wear a mama out. And when I’m tired, I get cranky and that leads to angry reactions.
Couple that with going to the classroom and trying to teach other exceptional children, those with clinical diagnosis and those you could self diagnosis.
1 tired mama + 3 ADHD children + 1 EBD boy + 1 ODD boy + 4 ADD children + 2 autistic children + 10 LD children + all the other children with a variety of other needs including anything from drug babies to GT know it alls = mucho frustration and sometimes a harsh tone
In chapter 11, Wendy stated, “Kids with behavioral, developmental, or learning issues can cause the whole family to have issues as well.” My son’s sickness was affecting his brother’s behavior and attitudes. My classroom full of variety affects the behavior and attitudes of me and my other students. We get tired and frustrated and angry.
And we cry out: THIS ISN’T FAIR! YOU MESSED UP GOD!
But He didn’t. God doesn’t mess up. Remember in Genesis when God created everything and He said it was good? And remember James 1:17 that says, “Every good and perfect gift is from above?”
God doesn’t mess up and He doesn’t make mistakes. Scripture is a beautiful reminder of how wonderfully knit together we are and how many times God broke the mold. God made your children with you in mind. He wasn’t surprised that I would be dealing with the illness of my son, the sensitivity of another, and the speech problems of a third, and He wasn’t surprised that your child is exceptional in his own way. And those exceptional characteristics, whether they are illness, speech impediments, autism, down syndrome, or hyperactivity, they remind us of our need for Christ and our need for wisdom.
When my son stayed so sick, and when he gets sick now, it slows us down. In this fast paced world, sometimes we just need to STOP and REST. His illnesses remind me of our need for Jesus. I’m also reminded that He is in control, not me.
When my exceptional students challenge me, it causes me to look for the beauty in each individual child and to love them like no other. Might I add for those of us that are teachers, God knew what he was doing when He placed those children on our class rosters. I believe that with my whole heart. He knew what those children needed and knew I could be a tool to provide for them. He also knew that those children would be a tool to provide for me.
These exceptional children we have provide us with an amazing opportunity: to love as Christ has loved.
It won’t be easy every day. Look at everything Jesus went through. Yet, through it all, He loved. Remember when he said, “Father forgive them for the know not what they do?” Shouldn’t we be like that?
Father, forgive me for I know not what I am doing. Yet, you do. You knew what you were doing when you created me to be this child’s mama (teacher). Please God, give me the loving wisdom to lead this child in a way that brings honor and glory to you.
So, my friend, how can you relate to having exceptional children either at home or in the classroom? Can we pray for you?
Is there scripture that can help you through the challenges of leading this precious child?