Neurodiversity on Spring Break

"Wow, you are really rocking this Spring Break Malory... the kids fell asleep immediately!” Ryan said enthusiastically after the boys fell asleep in record time on Day two of Spring Break last week.

I smiled awkwardly back... and muttered, “thank you” weakly in return.

As "well" as the week may have appeared to be going, I was NOT feeling well. 

Just two days into Spring Break and I was already starting to feel the waves of overwhelm.

A familiar veil of darkness had fallen over me and all I could see was how I was screwing up and failing. I did not feel like a capable, grown and healthy adult woman. I had slowly forgotten myself and allowed the fear, doubt and inner critic to brain wash me into believing that I was falling short and failing at everything... again. 

Where was the woman who had dedicated herself to navigating her life with a keen sense of self awareness, mindfulness, resilience, and equanimity? 

Where was the strong, confident, intuitive and wise human who was in charge here?

Where was the woman who took up space, unapologetically, unashamed, and unruffled?

I had no idea. 

I barely believed she existed anymore. 

I felt like a scared and hurt child. Confused, alone and completely overwhelmed with a world that I was certain I could NOT handle.

The following morning as I was navigating the daily morning rituals with my son, filling syringes with medicine, measuring medical formula, preparing his breakfast and answering the same questions over and over again, a truth surfaced that nearly sent me to my knees.

What if these moments of darkness, confusion and overwhelm that I feel, are simply a glimpse into what it is like for my son as he is doing his best to be himself in a world built for neurotypical humans.  

There he was. Just a child doing the best he could. Frustrated, confused, alone and completely overwhelmed in a world that, at times, feels like too much to handle. 

After the wave of deep empathy, compassion and new found sense of understanding passed over me, I felt more adequately equipped than ever before to support Luka as we figure out our place in the world together. 

I will never truly know how hard he has to work to navigate the "simplest' of moments with so many rules, expectations, and explanations that clash with his own neurological differences. 

What I do know, is that my role as his Mother is to trust that we have everything we need to set up a world for him where he can thrive, not in spite of these neurological differences, but because of them.