My daughter struggles with sensory processing issues. And it doesn’t stop there. It causes her a great deal of anxiety and depression.
For the longest time I didn’t really understand. I wanted to help her. I wanted to be empathetic but I wasn’t really sure how.
This morning God put a fresh thought on my heart. Her struggle with sensory processing is a lot like a struggle with chronic pain. Putting on her shoes is not just bothersome, it’s painful. Wearing socks is excruciating. Hearing me scratch my head is like nails on a chalkboard. It overwhelms her. And it never stops. There are days she copes with it better than others, but most days it’s just plain hard.
And it sounds weird, but understanding her battle as a dual with pain helps me understand. She’s not trying to annoy me or make me late for work. Her goal isn’t to make homework time into World War III or abandon her commitments. She’s doing the best she can with what she has. And there’s grace for that.
As her mom, I’m also doing the best I can. I don’t mean to yell at her and tell her she’s going to make me miss my meeting, or roll my eyes when she tries yet another outfit, or loudly sigh when she just can’t get something done in my allotted time frame. But sometimes I do. And there’s grace for that.
When it all comes down, we are both doing the best we can. And for whatever reason God sees fit to allow her tiny nerves to be exposed to extreme levels. Her senses are raw. She doesn’t like it, and neither do I. I don’t understand why it has to be this way, but I respect God, so I can respect it.
I can’t fix it, but I can accept it.
I can’t always smile through it, but I can sometimes. And sometimes I can even laugh about it.
And whether you are a mom of a child with sensory issues, anxiety, and depression, or not….you have your own battles. They may look different, but in so many ways they are the same.
So we respect, accept, cry at times, but smile and laugh through the tears …because in the end we know God is good. He is sovreighn, and as long as we walk with Him, there is no obstacle to great. We can keep going. We will keep going. And we will praise His name.