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Posted by on Mar 13, 2013 in Blog, Illustration, Inspiration & Thoughts, Thoughts | 12 comments

About Being Imperfectly Happy.

About Being Imperfectly Happy.

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The other day I was analysing my children carefully. They are so different but so similar at the same time. Natalie is gifted in areas where Diego struggles and vice versa, Diego is gifted in areas that are challenging for Natalie. I attended the parent-teacher conferences for both  recently. It was a great opportunity to see my children through another person’s eyes.

Having a neurotypical child and an Autistic child puts me in a special place. It helps me understand that children, no matter how their brains function, need the same basic things to be happy. The drawing below is my attempt to name what those basic things are.

Ingredients 960 About Being Imperfectly Happy.

Natalie’s grades came out perfect, literally, she got the highest scores in absolutely everything that the school measures by numbers. Diego’s scores on the other side came out far from perfect. Does this mean that Natalie is right and that Diego is wrong? Absolutely no. I can tell you that scoring so high is a challenge for Natalie, she feels lots of pressure to perform at the level that everyone expects from her. This generates stress and the idea that she can never make a mistake. Natalie suffers when she does something that is considered wrong, normally small unimportant things. Diego’s stress on the other hand has nothing to do with his academics, even though they’re not “perfect”, it has to do with how his brain is wired and with the way he processes the world through his hypersensitive senses. Diego’s main challenge is staying self-regulated under the daily stimulations that life generates such as sounds, light, movement, people’s interactions…But regardless of Natalie’s and Diego’s challenges, they’re both happy kids.

My children are happy regardless of their academics and regardless of their neurological landscapes, because they are loved and respected by their Mom and Dad and by other important people in their lives. Because they feel supported when a problem arises. Because they have the freedom to be who they are. And because we encourage them to explore and to express their unique natures. As a Mom, I want them to understand that the things that are really important (such as happiness) cannot be measured like you measure grades. I want them to understand that being imperfect is just perfect as long as we’re happy with who we are.

 

12 Comments

  1. you are such a wise and wonderful mother. I can’t wait to meet your family this summer.
    margie recently posted..wordless wednesdayMy Profile

  2. Beautiful and insightful….Sprinkle into that lots of laughs & family meals and you have a terrific recipe! Your children are very lucky indeed. They will be able to deal with what life has in store with such a solid loving base. Cheers to you!

  3. Gracias Elsita, como siempre me ayudas a pensar, a organizar ideas y sentimientos. Muy sabia tu reflexión, llena de amor y de alegría. Un beso enorme!!!!
    Magaly Puerta recently posted..Mi little friendMy Profile

  4. Elsa…you are the most loving mother, I can feel it ALL the way across the ocean..
    So lovely…

    My 12 year old son said the nicest thing anyone has ever said to me today…ever.

    Riel – “Man, my kids are going to be SO lucky…”
    Me – “Yes of course honey, they will have you as a Dad..”
    Riel – No Mom, because they will have you and Dad as Grandparents…!!”

    Just had to share…. :-)

  5. I’ve been telling my friends since my visit that what impressed me most by your home is that it is calm. No spats, no whining, no competition. I know this doesn’t come easy. So, bravo Elsa!
    Joan Chandler
    (Grateful Grandmother)

  6. I love this. If we could incorporate this lesson in our lives, they would be so much more meaningful.

  7. Wise words Elsita, I just wish I had your calm and tolerant nature. I have a challenging child, but also have my own issues that are a legacy of my childhood, I had partial dyslexia, ADD. Though sadly when I was a child there was no support, so I struggled or fell by the wayside, and as a result had an adolescence and young adulthood that was not always happy, secure or healthy. Now in my early 50s and in full menopause and with (minor) OCD, I find myself at times exhausted and despairing at the challenges I face. However, I count my blessings and remind myself always how lucky and blessed I am and that it could always be very much worse.

    I will try harder.
    Lorrie recently posted..Imagination is more….My Profile

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