Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Christmas traditions

I have always loved Christmas time, and when I had kids I thought of all the family traditions this season would bring. All the hype, the decorating, the cookie baking, seeing Santa, shopping.

I can think back to the first couple of Christmas' and recall they were smooth, Luke was only 2 when Zach was born and our first family of four Christmas was great. Then Zach got sick and the whole world changed. Zach was in and out of the hospital so much. His entire 2nd year of life was basically inpatient and every holiday was spent in a hospital bed. Not the family traditions I had planned on sharing at all. 
And now even though he is home from the hospital stays we face new challenges with both of them and all the festivities. Now I face the holidays head on with dyspraxia, ADHD, SPD, and many other challenges.

Going to parties and loud stores is too much, seeing Santa is just impossible, shopping is a complete no go with kids and baking cookies involves getting messy, which is not good.
All of the traditions I dreamt of and thought were what I wanted and what was important to my family, my kids, have been replaced. I have learned that my kids are special and what makes them special is the way they see and feel the world.
And our Christmas traditions are now made around them.
-Walking for Make a Wish under the Christmas lights of Tanglewood because Zach was wish kid
-Drinking warm chocolate (because temperature is a Big Deal) with whipped cream, eating popcorn and watching Christmas Scooby Doo
-Watching Santa on TV and cutting out magazine pictures to make our lists (we can't write words yet)
-Finding the Elf on the shelf and telling him what they want from Santa (because Santa is scary in person)
I look at other families and wonder what it's like to be able to stand in line and wait for Santa. I always think it would be nice to have those pictures. But wondering and wishing for the normalcy for my kids doesn't make me love our Christmas time any less.
The season is so much more than those family traditions and the perfect gifts

For me, its about how far we have come this year. How my 6 year old couldn't even write his name 10 months ago but now can sign the Christmas cards. How this year, they love Christmas music and want it played all the time. 
Its about them decorating the Christmas tree, and not thinking how all the ornaments are cluttered together and how there are more candy canes than lights on the tree. 
Its looking at the tree and seeing the most beautiful tree in the world, how its perfect in my eyes. 
And yes it does look like a 4 and 6 year old decorated it,
but I would never want it to look any other way.

When Christmas day comes and my boys wake up to find that Santa has came, and their smiles light up the room, that's how I know its worth it. 

Having a child with special needs is hard and challenging and sometimes all you do is wish for the normal. But then realize that to you they are perfect and no amount of normal could change that.  

And even though I don't have the family traditions I thought I wanted, I have the traditions I love and cherish and wouldn't change for anything.

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  1. You are ALL so special. Love, Mom (Nana)

  2. Lovely blog - have followed. I see you are part of the BloggerChallenge 2014 as am I - can't wait to read some posts.