a little boy in hospital

Special needs parenting: Living with Anxiety

Appointments with my son these days always lead up to dread, and ultimately anxiety.

Not only within myself, but he too, suffers from the anxiety.

At just seven years old, he already cringes and fears the mention of having a doctor’s appointment.

I sometimes look back and wish things were as they were when he was a baby. So innocent. So unaware of what was to come, even though the tests and procedures where of benefit to him.

You can only keep them unaware for so long.

Simple procedures like a routine dental cleaning, have now turned into something that needs anaesthesia.

Without something to calm his nerves, or put him under, my son cries, gags, and even vomits at the attempt to look into his mouth.

And the hardest part? All this doesn’t make any future appointments easier.

No matter how I try to explain that this procedure doesn’t hurt this time, that this is super quick if we just cooperate; we always end up leaving with more scars on top of the ones he already has formed in his memory.

Seven years old, and I see him worry about every little thing. Is there a way to cope without medication?

Without adding another little pill to his ever growing collection?

I have yet to speak with a doctor about it, as I am trying to learn and work through it with him myself.

It was not until my early adulthood that I learned I lived with anxiety. I chose the route of medication.

But it has not been an easy process.

I am old enough to know that certain things aren’t how it should be, and I am able to successfully communicate that with my doctor.

We are able to work together to change or alter medications to find the right fit.

But when you are seven, your capability of doing so drops dramatically.

For now, we must find ways to cope and learn together. Life is always a learning process.

But having a child with special needs, we usually find ourselves having to find ways around the “norm”.

Finding what works for us, and running full force with it until it no longer works.

Then we come back to the building blocks and start again.

Living with anxiety isn’t something that I want to cripple my son in living his full life.

But in a world where every day there is something to worry about, how do we work past that?

About Brittney Baumgartner

Mother to 3 boys, who are getting older by the second. Married to my best friend, Aaron. Living life day by day, in this rambunctious yet blessed household.

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