I wish I could just walk away without saying anything. I wish I could say that I didn’t even care to read the posts or the comments. I wish I could say it didn’t matter to me that people called me the worst things anyone could call a mother. I wish.
I was honest. I wrote a post that resonated with a lot of special needs parents, and then chose that post to do for Listen to Your Mother. I chose it over anything funny or uplifting as I truly believed, and still believe, that it was one of the most honest things I’ve ever written. It wasn’t easy to write, and it definitely wasn’t easy to give. I’m not a natural public speaker. When the videos came out, I watched it and cringed and cringed and cringed. I was embarrassed to post it. I only saw fault in the video.
What came next was the most amazing bunch of comments, shares and emails from people who had seen the video. I sat and cried as I read. I felt uplifted, little did I know how much I would need that in the days ahead. While most parents said that they have felt what I felt, there were a few that took me to task. Some where thoughtful in their disagreements, which is fine. I’m open to that kind of conversation. Some, without knowing me, without ever reading my blog, took me to task. Among other things, they said they felt sorry for my kids because they ended up with a mother like me.
I want to tell you that it didn’t hurt. I want to come across as being this picture of perfect strength. But that’s just not me. I’ve been waging a war against depression as it’s slowly crept into my bones. I’ve been taken off one medicine and put on another, and it’s screwing me up something fierce. Other circumstances in my life have taken whatever thickness I had accumulated to my skin and rubbed me raw. So when these posts came through (I get ‘pinged’ on my blog any time someone adds my web address to their own) I had only the cushion of the wonderful comments I had received to soften the blow of such harsh words. I wish one golden comment outweighed one horrible one. I wish that I remembered all of the good and shrugged off the bad. I’m working on that. One day I’ll be able to, right?
I wanted to go to these blogs and posts and write harsh rebukes about how they didn’t know me. I wanted to show them my blog and tell them how wrong they were. But they wouldn’t have come to see. They want to believe I’m terrible. They want to be “horrified” with me. They want to attack, and have done so repeatedly for the past year or so since I got on their radar. It’s sad to me. These are members of the disability community. Instead of fighting for rights, for educational changes, or for things that actually matter, they just attack each other then bitch about how nothing ever changes. They repeatedly question my advocacy, my mothering and the kind of human I am without knowing me or how hard I work to affect change.
And it hurts. It makes me want to quit fighting. I can’t fight for rights along side them if I’m fighting WITH them.
In the end, this blog isn’t for them. It’s not for my kids either. It’s for me. It’s for the other parents who feel the way I do and have told me that I have helped them to not feel as alone. Your comments here and on my page have kept me going when I wanted to throw in the hat. You’ve kept me writing, and I’m supremely grateful.