Imagine what it was like running errands and navigating life outside the house with an infant and the weight that was lifted (pun intended) as the older and you got to shed diaper bags and strollers.
Now imagine that you get to pack that stuff around with you for every outing, for the next ten years.
Taking care of a child with special needs is not for the faint of heart - it is hard and heavy and tiring - it's also amazing. Seeing that child light up at the park or coming home from a good day at school fills your soul with light.
Gone are the days of impromptu trips to the park or running to the store, leaving the house requires a plan and a packed bag- making sure that you calculate how long you will be gone and that your kid will have enough stuff to make it through the day. The thought of forgetting something at home can be anxiety ridden because most of the crucial things needed cannot be bought at your neighborhood Walmart.
Last weekend we made the two hour trek to Portland to spend family time at the zoo, we ended up staying the night in Portland so our packing list grew even longer. I packed the usual stuff - clothes for the next day, toothbrushes and jammies. But because both my kids have special needs our packing list can grow quite long.