Friday, March 13, 2009

Comparisons...never a good idea

Don't compare. That should be a hard and fast rule. You would think I would know that by now.

When I was in high school, I had a poster of Albert Einstein on my wall with this quote, "Do not compare yourself with others, for you will always find someone better and worse than yourself." Or something close to that.

At the time, it made a big impact on me and helped me through some tough years. I never forgot it.

But, then the kids came along and it is really hard not to compare to other kids their age. With Shea, that was really painful so, understandably I stopped comparing typically developing kids.

But when I read a really good blog post about another kid with Apraxia the other day, I slipped right into comparing my speech delay kid with hers.

I know, I should know better by now.

One side of me celebrated with the mother for the great strides that her son was making. He was only 3 and he was doing great; sentences, content, vocabulary. No doubt Speech Therapy 3 days a week was key. But, how could they afford that?

See? Don't compare. It will always make you either feel like shit or smug. And, neither is a very good way to feel.

So, I guess, honestly, it made me feel like a loser and afraid for Shea all over again. That I am not advocating hard enough. That I am not doing everything that I can possibly do. That I should be somehow making the state pay for more than they already are. It makes me feel like I am lazy and don't sit down and focus on drills and modeling as much as I should.

That I just treat him like a "normal" kid too much. Is that possible? Is that terrible? Sometimes I don't even know anymore.


Henry's mom said...

HI Shelley,

It is late at night and I can not sleep, worrying about Henry.... I have been away this past week with him on vacation, so, instead of laying in bed not sleeping, I stated catching up on some blogs, yours being the first one...

You are so right, it is so HARD not compare, it gets us nowhere but it is so hard not too.

You are doing a great job with Shea and do not beat yourself up that you are not doing enough. We all do what is enough for us and what we can afford and what we feel is best or our children.

I too get caught up in the oh no, am I doing "enough", never really feeling like it is enough. I course Henry has had no speech this past week, since we were away and I feel so bad about that, I feel like I am always beating myself up.

With these children the progress is always there it is just so slow that it feels like it is not there. I have to always remind myself, where was Henry 3 months ago to realize the difference now and it is always amazing.

Chin up, you are a wonderful mom, Shea is so lucky to have you.


Shea's Mom said...

Thanks. I have missed you. I was wondering where you were.

Hope you had fun.

thanks for the pep talk. It is always appreciated.


deirdre said...

Shea is lucky to have you as a mom, steady Jake as a dad, and fiercely loyal and loving sister in Molly. He picked just the right family to join.

Anonymous said...

You have always been one of the toughest and sensative poeple I have ever met.That is what makes you, you! It is tough in life to not compare our childern to others or what we have or have not done for our children (Yes we are human and not machines that can just store our emotions). You are not a loser and being afraid is a trait of a good parent. If you were not afraid I would be worried. You are doing a great job at working on balance between both of your children. You keep treating Shea how you fell inside want him treated go with your heart, you have great instincts. Shea will get it in time, there I am sure were and are times that you blink and go "wow Molly is now Ten" and you blink again and "wow Shea is now five", time is how we judge it with our kids, and when we are having a tough time as parents time seems to drag. Give him time, treat him how you feel he should be, listen to your heart. Smitch!

Shea's Mom said...

Wow, thanks you guys. I feel better. Just a little low point but your words really help.

Hugs to you all.

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