How Parenting Kids with Special Needs Shifts Your Reality

Our Unique Situation

We have a son and a daughter. My son Zeke was about two and we realized that he was not meeting his milestones, and, in theory, hadn’t developed in line with other children in the way he was supposed to develop. Between the ages of about two and three, he began to regress, which means he went backward and started losing skills. One day he was able to do something and the next week he wasn’t anymore. That happened over the course of about nine months.

Meanwhile, we had our daughter, Anna, who is 18 months younger than him. She seemed fine and had progressed beyond where Zeke was, but then the same thing happened with her—and much more so. She much more severely regressed. She was losing skills and going backward.

We still love God, we still want to honor him. How on earth do we do life in this new kind of reality that we’re in?

Now, they’re actually at different stages. Zeke has recovered and gone on beyond where he was when he was two, but Anna, who is now seven, is still behind where she was. She functions at about the age of an 18-month old.

My son also has ADHD and my daughter also has epilepsy. She started having seizures at about age one, which in the early days were very frightening. They’re now much more under control with medicine and so on.

When Life Looks Different Than We Thought It Would

So, it was the combination of those three or four different conditions that meant our daily life—when we woke up, went to work, how we ate meals, how we did holidays and weekends, and how we thought about the future we were going to have with children leaving home—had completely changed. In our case, it all took place over the course of about two years.

The Life We Never Expected

Andrew Wilson, Rachel Wilson

This touching memoir by two parents recounts the highs and lows of raising children with special needs, ultimately directing readers to the God who promises us peace and joy, even in the midst of trials.

In a sense, our story was really one of reconsidering every aspect of our lives. We still love God, we still want to honor him. How on earth do we do life in this new kind of reality that we’re in?

We didn’t want to ending up acting as if we are uniquely suffering for anything, because we aren’t. Loads of people go through tough stuff. But, in our case, this new reality was going to require rethinking everything.

This is our story of how we came to do that—some of the things that we did wrong, some that we did right, and how God, in his grace, has helped us through our journey.

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