My husband Rick and I have spoken often at genetic family support conferences about the ins and outs of tending to our relationship against the backdrop of chaos and crisis that often is part of the journey alongside disability, and the art of care-taking one's self in the absence of opportunity to do so with the tasks required to tend to a loved one with special needs.
Basic positive psychology, faith and hope in a desired outcome, and daily attention to what we say to ourselves and to others leads this session about training for joy alongside disability, because the sorrow is a given. We can choose to notice and perhaps grab the joy if we learn how.
We strive for a more inclusive session with stories from other participants in the group setting and ideas aimed at keeping us committed to maintaining our own nurturing alongside the choices inherent in raising a child with disability.
Parenting Davis requires constant adjusting to new truths, acknowledging and moving past sadness over what will never be, and enthusiastically accepting the better points of what is. Having an 8 year-old in diapers streak a business cocktail party during his clothes-off phase is a tension breaker. Standing by as medical personnel whisk him away to save him is a heart breaker. Safe grace is somewhere in the middle.