Find your tribe ~
This autism journey is a roller coaster of emotions . We all go through a profound sense of loss when our child is diagnosed .
You will blame yourself
You will feel guilty
You will ask why over and over as the tears fall and you can’t wrap your head around why your child was dealt this incredibly difficult hand
You will feel so alone even in a room full of people
You will feel empty
You will look at your child and feel
So much love and you will vow to do anything to help them
You will Learn to advocate and fight for what they need
If you are lucky you will have the support of your family and friends, let them help you
You may still
Feel isolated hurt and angry
I have been incredibly blessed with so much support and love for my daughter and it has helped me through my darkest days
You will learn to find the beauty and joy in the simplest things
But this journey is a Rocky one . It is filled with love but rocky nonetheless
Friends and family may fade away or you may feel that you are a burden . They will try to cheer you up when that’s not what you need . They will diminish your struggles and difficulties with platitudes and simple answers to complicated problems
It is not on purpose , they don’t know what to say . They can not understand the weight you have . Sometimes on the outside looking in you don’t see how hard the struggle is .
22 years ago support and understanding wasn’t there . If I could of found people
Who were going through what I went through , who could truly understand it would of been life changing .
When my daughter begin to transition into adult services I began to struggle . Everything was changing and I was scared of the unknown . I started searching for groups and information about adults services and services in general . I joined several groups .
I found a page called finding coopers voice. She had a little boy and I saw my daughter in him . She wrote about all the hard and it brought me back so fast . I watched all these moms make comments and talk about their struggles and I wanted to reach out and reassure them that everything would be ok . I had been through all this hard and wanted to wrap this mom and all these others in a hug .
Kate Swenson brought all of us together and created a supporters page and private group called coops troops . She gave us all a voice and let us be heard .
People who understand the hard and hold your hand through it . They celebrate every win know matter how big or small . They become your cheerleaders .
We all lead very different lives but are bonded together with similar struggles , and at our core we are the same. We weather the same storm , we may be on different boats but we will give anyone a lifesaver who needs it .
I didn’t even realize I needed a tribe . I am able to give back and that fills my cup.
This wonderful group of women hold you up . They cheer you on , they cheer your child on . We ride the emotional roller coaster together .
We started holding zooms and bonding at another level .
My closest friends are all from
this troop . We laugh together, we cry together . We support and give each other a voice . Our kids are all different levels and ages , it doesn’t matter. We come from all different places and walks of life and it doesn’t matter … because at our core we are the same .
I am forever grateful to KT Swenson for giving us each other , for giving us a voice and a helping hand whether it is to reach for someone or reach out to them
Find your tribe it will change your life .
Thank you to Jaime from Johnny’s Spirit and Amanda from Jackson’s Journey, Jackson’s Voice for inspiring this piece and of course to Kate from Finding Cooper’s Voice