We Are Stronger Than We Think

Eleanor Roosevelt said: “A woman is like a tea bag – you can’t tell how strong she is until you put her in hot water.” Tell us about a time you felt your strength.

I feel my strength every day.  It’s kind of unavoidable as a parent or as a parent of a disabled child or, as I feel like at the moment with my husband being away, as a single parent.

They say that you are never given more than you can handle but sometimes after a car journey which lasts 55 minutes instead of 25 because of heavy, stop-start traffic and trying to concentrate on the traffic while my son is trying to have a conversation with me it’s hard.  The conversation itself would have been fine if the journey had lasted 25 minutes instead of 55.  However, the conversation gets very repetitive and sometimes hard to understand as my son uses signs to reinforce his, mainly, unclear speech.

Most of the time, I don’t consider that my life is any harder than any other parent.  In fact, I don’t have a lot of the challenges of many parents, my son doesn’t have a mobile phone so I don’t have to wonder what he is saying, silently, to his friends.  He doesn’t have a Facebook account either.  I have other challenges which are becoming more apparent as my son gets older; what is he going to do when he finishes school?  Will he be able to get a job, even with support?  Will he be able to travel independently to get to college and, in the future, work?

I have had to be strong since my son was born over 19 years ago but I think I’m going to have to be even stronger in the next few years as my son goes through the transition from school to college to work and, eventually, leaving home.  Cutting the apron strings and giving the responsibility of my son’s care and welfare to someone else is not something that I am looking forward to but he can’t stay at home forever.