Skip to main content

Wisdom for Wives Who Are Moms of Kids with Special Needs – by Cheryl

Photo by Drew Hays on Unsplash

A guest post by one of my readers, Cheryl. I’m so thankful she is willing to share some of the things she has learned on the tough road she and her husband and family have shared. Honestly, they are pearls of wisdom for all of us!

As we sat in our car in the medical parking lot, somewhat numb and in shock, we wondered what God was doing. We had just been told our 7 month-old son had Lissencephaly. We had no idea what to expect. Married just under 3 years, we had already experienced the birth of our first-born son, the still-born birth of his twin brother, and numerous hospital stays – all before our first anniversary.

Now what was God doing? Didn’t He know we couldn’t do this?

What about our hopes, our dreams? What now? So many questions and no answers, except to trust the One who knew them.  We had vowed we would stay together and persevere, no matter what life brought our way. It is this commitment and a gracious, merciful and faithful God that has carried us through.

Fast forward five years and our family now consisted of four boys; our youngest, also diagnosed with Lissencephaly. Our lives revolved around therapies, IEP’s, school and government paperwork, doctor’s appointments and seizure management – along with work, school and church activities. We did our best to keep up, to be the best parents we could be to all our sons. And, life went on.

Our marriage often took a back seat.

Although we did attend a few marriage conferences and took a few weekend getaways and short vacations, bitterness, anger and isolation was creeping in, unseen, ignored and left to grow. What I started realizing around 23 years of marriage, was that I had baggage that needed to be addressed. I had bitterness. I had attitudes that needed adjusting and a heart that needed to be changed.  A lot of pain and subsequent consequences could’ve been avoided had I chosen to heed the early warning signs.

With this in mind, may I share with you some of the lessons God has been teaching me the past couple of years while in His loving refining room?

  • Abiding in Christ: Growth, peace and contentment in my personal life and marriage begins and ends with abiding in Christ. “I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing.” John 15:5. This means staying close to my Shepherd, getting to know Him, loving Him, trusting Him, obeying Him.
  • Obedience: I am learning that my obedience and yielding to Christ, or lack there-of, affects not only my ability to know Him, to hear His voice, to see His work in my life and to be used by Him, but also affects my relationships, my marriage, my attitudes, my peace of mind and my heart. In the midst of all the demands and responsibilities that come along with being a mom of boys with special needs, I oftentimes put obeying God on the back burner. I neglected my time with Him. I didn’t guard my heart, my words, my thoughts, or my actions – especially in my marriage. I took my marriage and husband for granted, failing to realize the gradual erosion taking place.
  • Address Issues Early: Looking back, I wish my husband and I would’ve worked through our baggage, couple issues, and differences in the early years of our marriage. Although, it would’ve been difficult finding childcare (as is often the case due to high medical needs and challenges), and expensive to see a counselor, we probably would’ve avoided pain and pitfalls down the road.
  • Thankfulness: God is teaching me that a thankful heart and attitude keeps bitterness and a sour attitude from nesting in my heart. If I keep fixated on what my boys can’t do, what they are missing out on, and what my husband and I are missing out on, then, not only do I grow bitter, but, I can become depressed and lose hope. Finding reasons to thank God each day helps me keep an eternal perspective, see God’s blessings in our lives and helps keep me abiding in Him.
  • Mentors:This can be a lonely and isolating life. I’ve learned that the Christian life isn’t meant to be either. We need Christian mentors in our lives;  older, wiser women as well as older, more experienced couples. It’s hard to reach out and invest the time and energy necessary for close friendships amid all the on-going responsibilities that come with the special needs territory, but it is well worth it! Years ago, God brought an older, wiser woman of God into my life who has walked with me through many seasons, mountaintops and valleys, joys and sorrows. She offers encouragement, a listening ear, wisdom, truth and perspective.  My husband and I are also in a couple’s small group Bible study. Getting there isn’t always easy or convenient and requires sacrifice on our part; but, we receive  encouragement and accountability in our marriage, and the opportunity to encourage and minister to other couples.
  • Reaching Out in Ministry: God is helping me to reach out and use my gifts to help others. This is a toughie as we SN (special needs) moms just don’t have a lot of extra time to devote to long-term, even short-term ministry. For many years, I was involved in music ministry. It worked well as it was flexible and allowed me the opportunities to use my gifts and talents for the kingdom.  God has changed my direction somewhat the past few years, stretching me in undeveloped areas and giving me many smaller opportunities to serve others. I’m learning to look for these opportunities daily and though they are often small acts, others are encouraged and blessed, and so am I.
  • God’s Word/Hope: God’s Word, His truths and promises, sustain me and help keep my eyes on Him. Meditating on and memorizing Scripture is not an easy discipline for me, but the verses I’ve learned are  readily available when I need them the most. Lately, these two verses on hope have really encouraged me.

“[Now] we have this [hope] as a sure and steadfast anchor of the soul [it cannot slip and it cannot break down under whoever steps out upon it–a hope] that reaches farther and enters into [the very certainty of the Presence] within the veil.”  Hebrews 6:19 AMPC

“Now may God, the inspiration and fountain of hope, fill you to overflowing with uncontainable joy and perfect peace as you trust in him. And may the power of the Holy Spirit continually surround your life with his super-abundance until you radiate with hope!”  Romans 15:13 TPT

 

Lord,

We praise You as Creator. You formed us and knit us together just the way You wanted. We are fearfully and wonderfully made! Forgive us for our impatience, selfishness and reluctance to trust You. We pray for strength and stamina through sleepless nights and long days. Give us friends who can encourage us and give us relief when our nerves are frayed. And, give us hope when everything seems dark. We look forward to the great reward of someday seeing our special children, specially perfect!

Amen.

SHARE

What struggles and trials have you gone through in your marriage, family, career, or life that has brought about a harvest of godly wisdom you feel led to share with us?

Or do you simply need some encouragement and prayer today to help you in the midst of your current trial? Let us know so we can pray with you.

Also, if you have a testimony you’d like to share for a post on any topic, I’d love to read it. I’m looking for women’s stories about things God has taught them and how God has changed and healed them through Christ. I prefer articles about 1000-1500 words in length. You may send them to me on my contact page. I’d love to have some guest posts to share especially for the month of April.

 

Much love!

 

 

 

 

 

4 thoughts to “Wisdom for Wives Who Are Moms of Kids with Special Needs – by Cheryl”

  1. Thank you for this post! My son is 4.5 and has autism. It has definitely been the hardest thing I’ve ever faced. And my marriage has taken a backseat to everything that autism comes with. ❤️Trusting God for our future and praising him that my son is fearfully and wonderfully made

    1. Nicole,
      This would be extremely challenging. Praying for God’s wisdom, strength, encouragement, and resources for you for your parenting, your son, your marriage, and you and your husband in your own spiritual lives.

      I’m so glad this post was a blessing.

      I invite God to take this difficult trial and make it something beautiful and glorious for His Kingdom and for your benefit, your husband’s benefit, and your son’s benefit.

      <3

    2. Hello all and thank you for this post. I have a daughter who is 16 and was diagosed with autism at the age of 4 1/2 years and it was tough. I thought out world had fallen apart and I focused on the negatives all the doctors and specialists said about my daughter, its not easy when it feels like they ripping your child to shreds and giving you no hope at all. i felt all they wanted was money money and more money we could not afford. it was really hard road to travel and know my daughter is at not far off finishing school it brings me into a new season of what is next for her?? and Know I have to fill out more forms to get help as she coming into adulthood and will need help when it comes to further study and finding work.
      She has come along way, she still struggles with socializing but who doesnt have things they good at?? we all have our weaknesses.
      I just want to encourage you Nicole, I have been there at the toddler stage and its hard when they can’t communicate what the problems are, but it will get better, they change and grow everyday and just keep praying for him everyday and focus on the things he is good at and run with it. My daughter always loved to draw and we have bought her heaps of books on how to draw and bought her books and paints and all sorts of art supplies cos its her passion. I always encourage her to keep praticing, and you know what she is so talented, everyone i shown her work too is blown away. What ever his love is focus on it and build on it it will be something he can look forward too. it might take time to find what it is but ask God to show you what it is. You are doing a great job. and your not alone.

      thank you April for allowing others to share their stories on here. i hope and pray your family is well and God is giving you peace and strength as you too have been through alot in the last few months. you are in my thoughts and prays ladies.

      1. Bec Dean,

        Thank you so much for sharing. I really appreciate you sharing your experiences with Nicole and the other moms here. I love to see sisters in Christ encouraging one another and sharing what they have learned. It is beautiful!

        Thank you for your prayers. We have had a pretty tough 8 months or so. Grief has been hitting us in new waves as we have been clearing out Greg’s parents’ house and are getting it ready to sell. But God is with us. He will strengthen us in all of this.

        Much love!

Join in the discussion and share your heart with us.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: