Being a Momma is something that when my husband and I decided to start trying to get pregnant was just an idea and dream in my mind. I look back at that time and just remember having all these thoughts about what it would be about, how it would feel, and so many other things. I think as an expectant first time momma, you never really can truly grasp the full impact that it will have on your life until it actually comes true! No matter the stories other women would tell me or the explanation of how I could feel was shared with me, you don’t truly know until… it happens!
Then Wyatt came bounding into this world! My first year as a Momma proved to be challenging because well let’s be honest there is a LOT to learn! There is no manual! I gave up my career and any sense of financial comfort to be home with him. We decided this was the best for our family. I have over the past 2 1/2 years, had various part-time jobs that worked around the schedule I needed and that has been a blessing. Thank goodness for God’s opening of doors in that area. As we made our way towards year number 2 in Wyatt’s life, my husband and I started to share the same concern that something wasn’t right with Wyatt. He was…well…different. From February 2016 to May 2016 we went thru the Early Intervention process, then in May of 2016 Wyatt was diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder ( I hate the word disorder, because it isn’t a disorder, it is a way of life. But that is for a whole other blog post.) The word momma took on a whole other meaning when that diagnosis entered our world. A whole new set of responsibilities and struggles fell into our laps. There is a weight that a special needs momma feels when navigating the special needs world. There is this constant question in your mind that you keep asking, “Am I making the right choices?” “Is this the best for my son?” I mean it is CONSTANT! My husband and I have been BLESSED with some amazing advocates, friends, therapists, doctors and County Workers to guide us in decision-making. I find it truly amazing that thru this whole process God literally placed very specific people into our lives when we needed them. I consider that a modern-day miracle. The series of events and people who came into our lives at this difficult time were PERFECT!
The only word Wyatt said from about 18 months to about 24 months was “Dada.” Now that melts my heart because my husband and Wyatt are two peas in a pod! I mean they are best buddies! I loved that he would say “Dada” even if he would literally use that word for everything. Many other “words” or sounds that correlate with a meaning of a word have come thru with a lot of speech therapy. Sign Language has become a beacon of hope in our home. Sometimes this is the only form of communication that Wyatt will respond to or use. So props to American Sign Language you are a life-saver! With all of this progress, there has been one missing word that my heart just craved to hear. That word was “Momma, Mommy, Mom” ANYTHING of the sort!!! I mean, I KNEW that Wyatt knew I am his “person…” his mom, but to hear that word come from his mouth directed my way was something I have been praying and craving! So I have waited. I have to give so much credit to Wyatt’s speech therapist. He has had 2 amazing speech therapists! His first in-home speech therapist was my sanity, my sounding board, my friend really! The day we decided to move Wyatt into programming and end in-home therapy was bittersweet because that meant we had to say goodbye to her and hello to someone new! But, you know God…He just does his thing and provides someone PERFECT for Wyatt! She has been working so hard to help Wyatt continue to find his voice! There are some good sessions and some not so good. They are currently working very hard on developing sounds into words, continuing the use of sign language and working on interaction. One word they have worked on is “Momma” it is easier to say than “Mommy” I am assuming and they have been using the sign for it as well. I have heard his speech therapist say that he has said it….and he has even said it with a lot of prompting, but it has never just come out of his mouth directed towards me as an interaction. Until….yesterday, January 12, 2017! A day I will always remember!
Everyday I drive Wyatt 40 minutes to school, wait 2 1/2 hours in the area, then drive him home another 40 minutes home. 5 days a week…it is worth it because he is so connected to his teachers, therapists, and quite frankly this school is just AMAZING! So when I go to pick up Wyatt, I wait outside the classroom door that I can’t see in. Wyatt is in a special needs preschool classroom. It is called ELA 1 room. He is in a class of maximum 8 students just like him with Autism or other developmental disabilities as well as 1 special education teacher and 2 special education aides. Everyday I wait outside his classroom the anticipation for me is huge! I can’t wait to see his face! I know it is only 2 1/2 hours but I miss the little guy! So, yesterday the door opens and I walk in… sure enough Wyatt looks right at me and makes the sign for “Momma” and says….wait for it…”MOMMA!” I held back the tears and just squeezed him! Oh how sweet that sound was that came from that tiny little beautiful mouth! This tiny voice…”Momma.” As I sit here and type this I am feeling the pure joy all over again. Now, he hasn’t said it since without a lot of prompting but darn it, it is in there!!
I share this story today not only because I am just so darn excited to share it but because it is a testimony to God’s goodness and his listening to my broken heart. This year has been a challenge, I have cried, laughed, screamed to God many times about this circumstance, but I am slowly growing into this role as special needs momma. It is such an important role. It is the MOST important role that I will EVER have in my entire life. The role is a piece to my Living Wonderfully Made. It is a role that I will continue to grow into and learn. I have some amazing special needs momma’s in my life that thank goodness I walk down this road with.
Today, my cup is filled to the brim. Wyatt, called me “Momma.”
Live Wonderfully Made