One thing about the pandemic is that it has made us re-evaluate what is important in our lives. And one of the most important and indispensable in your life is family. It is your spouse and children.
Now when you have special need children, this is the best time to show them love, attention and care. It is not always about buying those expensive toys or taking them to exorbitantly dear schools where you spend an arm and a leg.
No, they want you playing with them, chiding them and congratulating their new milestones. They want you to look straight into their eyes and tell them that you care
Now my son is a late talker. He is almost three but he only mumbles isolated words here and there. At first I thought that he was autistic and consulted so many people. Though am a specialist, when it comes to your child, you are sure to panic.
- Look for second opinion about the kid’s condition
During this period, if you are able you could connect with specialists who are likely to have ample time to check up your child condition and give relevant advice. For whatever they say, you should however not take it as the final say; no, you can always look for a second opinion from another specialist who is not in the same organization as the first one.
I know of parents who have been told that their kids have autism felt dejected but later on, it was found out that the kids were nothing but late talkers. To avoid this, I always advise people to look for other specialists who are going to reassess the kids independently.
- Be a DIY person and make toys with them
Kids love it when you get them toys. But is more enjoyable when you make the toys with them. Say for example that the kid has tactile needs and you have heard that a sensory board would be of great help. Rather than buying the toy, you could get plywood, some locks, gear wheels and switches from yoru local store so as to make the diy sensory board with the kid as they look over.
Doing the diy toys give the kid ample time to bond with you while at the same time teach them relevant skills on making and fixing things.
- Make read a few books that will encourage you
I have been reading a book called the Einstein syndrome that is written by Thomas Sowell whose kid was a late talker. While he was labeled as a retard, intellectually disabled and even autistic, Thomas later finds that the kid was only speech delayed. He even goes ahead to analyze a compilation of other kids who had what he calls the Einstein syndrome.
- Form online support groups with other parents whose children have special needs
We are social beings and despite the lockdown, social distancing and quarantines that covid 19 has introduced, you can always join online support groups where you meet other parents like you whose kids have special needs. While there, share, encourage and support each other. Support groups have always been found to offer psycho social support especially if you are proactive in them and not afraid to offload your concerns.
- Learn to prioritize them
It is time when we learnt to prioritize our kids so that they felt special and gained self esteem. We have always been busy and do not notice as the toddlers grow into teenagers and then into young adults. It is time to take a breather and spend quality time with those little angels.