I'm sorry, but we are not superheroes

A lot of parents with special needs children will be told, "Oh my gosh, you are so amazing!" "I could never do it!" "You guys are incredible".

I've heard it, and if you are a parent struggling in a difficult, unique family situation, you have heard it too. But, truth be told, we are not really that amazing. Sorry.


A lot of us chose to become parents of kids with special needs through adoption or foster placements. We choose this life because we felt called to it somehow.


We felt an urging of compassion and acted on it. Or maybe, if you are like me, you have a bit of a Messiah complex. It's not uncommon for foster parents to have this saviour mentality. But we need to daily be reminded to let that go. It's tough. We feel so strongly for these hurting little kids that we uproot our lives for them. We sacrifice everything for them. And a lot of that is beautiful. But some of it is ugly.


Because the truth is, we are not braver, stronger, smarter, faster, wiser or bolder than anyone else. And because we are not superheroes, we get really tired. Just like everyone else.


Our bodies were not made to withstand the storms that rage around us. We are often just not strong enough. So we struggle with sleeping and socializing and staying healthy.

We cannot fly let alone get anywhere fast! So we race and nag and often show up late and frazzled.


We don't have a lasso of truth to figure out the lies swirling around us. So we often feel like we are going crazy trying to sort out reality.


Most of us cannot afford a nice car, let alone find the time to clean the one we have!




For me, March is always the toughest month of the year. Everything feels cold and grey. Spring break can feel long and exhausting for those of us that cannot afford to go find the sun. The kids have been inside for what seems like forever! I used to go to tanning beds in March. To get a little vitamin D and an emotional boost. But now they say I should do that anymore. So I'm trying to get to the gym and drink some water and take some deep breaths outside.


Especially in March I am reminded that no matter how cool I think Wonder Woman is... I am not her. This journey we have chosen is not easy. It is really hard. Super hard, and we are not super heroes.


So, its ok to fall apart. It's ok to put boundaries in place to protect your time and emotions. It's ok to cry. It's ok to exhale with a glass of wine. It's ok to be human.

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© 2018 by Trish Jonker

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