You know I realized I hadn't really talked about me as a mom in a minute. I talked about becoming a mom on my podcast, but I don't think I've really blogged about my mommy life.
For those new here, Hi! My name is Daniyah and I'm the mother of 3 sons; the Archangel, the Dark Knight, and the Boy Wonder. Now you may be wondering if I switched Universes given one is not like the others. My first born, Gabriel, is currently with the Ancestors. I may tell that journey another time. However his beautiful brothers are here and he watches over us all. The younger two are 6 and 4 respectively.
I think it's important to talk a little about what it means to be "highly sensitive". It means exactly as it sounds. It's like you're sensitive, very sensitive, and "OMG what is that noise? What is that smell? Why are you so...? My brain is going 100 mph." sensitive.
For me it shows up in a multitude of ways. I'm funny about furniture. I know that sounds odd but I really don't sit on most furniture directly. It feels funny after awhile. I can do it briefly or if I have on pants. However, after awhile I'm looking for a blanket or something. I like things to feel soft on my skin for the most part, unless I'm actually trying to scrub. I've bought clothes and ended up giving them away because I couldn't stop itching (this is even after washing them several times).
Smells. Man, pregnancy really made that worse. I already had a decent sense of smell but now.... it's really crazy. My ex would have me smell things because I could smell that it was on its way to going bad. I smell good things too though. Nice smelling cologne, I can pick it out of a crowd if I really like it.
Sounds. My TV needs to be under 20. Really under 16. Like it can't be too loud. Conversation around me can't get too crazy. It's just all too loud. That started when I was young. Imagine being in your 20s trying to figure out why the tv is so loud.
Couple these with spiritual sensitivity and it can make for interesting days in new locations. Not unmanageable, just interesting depending on what I have going on.
My sons are both on the Spectrum and have some sensitivities to their environment. Both are funny about touch. They like to be hugged, squeezed, anything that gives them more than the regular amount of pressure. However, I noticed, especially my 6 year old, certain clothing bothers them. I've started to pay a little more attention to things he takes off immediately. If it feels funny on my skin, I typically won't buy it for them to wear. 1) Because it will feel icky in my hands and 2) I just err on the side of caution that they'll feel the same.
Certain locations I can't take them. It's not always the same with them either. One may be ok while the other is not and vice versa. I also pay attention to if they cry or really fight like I'm not going in there. I know they can sense energy and I pay that really close attention. Kids tend to be more connected than adults so if they wig, that gives me pause.
How they react to things like being fussed at or directives (even when not upset or raising my voice). I watch that. Sometimes I am completely caught off guard. It's not easy trying to help your son do some things and he simply doesn't understand you . It's frustrating and I'm confident they can sense it when I'm frustrate. One said as much to me. Literally said, "Mommy is frustrated". They just know. I can have the door closed to my altar room and if I'm crying they show up.
Occasionally, they'll say something to me and I have to stop and really ponder what they said. Like which ancestor is trying to get my attention through my son? It will seem something so random to someone else but it will be something related to maybe a thought or situation and I'll just pause.
My kids don't really understand that I'm sensitive. So there are days where I'm spent physically. Like I can't deal with any physical stimuli and they'll want to hug and whatnot. It's sad because I honestly am tapped out. The same goes for noise. I have high ceilings and the noise is... sometimes just so loud to me. It took a client being present and me asking her how they sounded, in order for me to see it. She was like they are only at a 5. It was like an 11 for me. LOUD.
I am ever mindful how I do things, how I say things, how I handle situations that arise. I'm sensitive so I can be on 10 when I need to just be at 5. I pause, a lot, I sometimes make myself endure the noise because I know they really aren't that loud. I try to be really cognizant that they don't understand, I give the hugs, even when my body is telling me no more.
If my sons cry, I am really intentional about them knowing it is ok to cry. I tell that their heart just needs a bath and it's ok to cry. I don't want them growing up thinking it's a weakness when it's really a powerful healing tool. I ask them how they feel and if they want to do whatever, whenever that is an option.
The other morning my youngest was crying. Just out the blue. Tears. I'm like what is happening. I thought it was about him going to Speech (He just started). Then I realized the girl outside was crying. I asked him how he felt, He said "I happy". He'll tell me when he's sad so I took him at his word. When it happened later I felt it like wash thru him. Like a wave of sad hit him and he cried. Then I wanted to cry. I walked him through some affirmations to encourage him protecting his energy.
Having children with special needs can be an adventure. Add some highly sensitive senses and this really shakes things up a little more. Every day I'm learning what works and what doesn't. I can't use the same logic as neurotypical kids all the time. Some things work, some don't. What I do is try. I'm not perfect. There are days I question if I get anything right. Here's a little way I know that I do sometimes.
Tonight, I told my sons to go to bed. I go to the bathroom and the Dark Knight says, " I am ready for affirmations. I want affirmations please."
Let me back up. In the mornings, when we are traveling to this or that service, I have a morning routine. We do affirmations, the weather, what day is it, and exercise is "If you're happy and you know it". What I've been doing now is asking if they are ready for affirmations. If they say no I leave it be. I don't want it to be a chore. I want it to be something they want to do.
So, tonight when he asked that made me smile. I said, ok I'm ready. I let them lead them. They each said at least one affirmation on their own that they remembered. Then he says, I want exercise please. My son then leads us in "If you're happy". I need you to understand the Wow in this moment. My son has a severe speech delay. He can say words but isn't the hugest conversationalist. So to hear him, ask and then sing. Man..... I know I'm doing something right.
For parents in general, but especially those with special needs, one day, one moment at the time. Ask for help when you need a break. Leverage therapy for YOU if you can. Self care is a must, your joy leads to their joy. You gotta make sure your cup runneth over before pouring. And take the wins. Celebrate them. Revel in them. Even if no one gets it. YOU get it and that's all that matters.
Peace and love to y'all. Hope you enjoyed this.