Today I had to work on updating my will. As in six feet under, dead and gone. I have not updated it since my divorce three years ago, and now I am standing in a very different place in my life: single Mom, son with Autism, two kids, only custodial parent. I came to a realization this morning; I just can't die.
I think everyone could relate to this post, but especially parents with children with special needs. My son is only five, and although he has made leaps and bounds, I have no idea what the future holds for him. Although my wish is that he will lead a productive, self-sufficient life, I have no way of knowing if that is a possibility.
There is nobody who can take care of my kids like I will. Nobody. In the process of deciding "who gets them" when I'm gone, I had to set the 'love' portion aside. Lots of family and friends love my children, they will never want for that. But caring for a child with special needs takes more than love; it's a full-time job. Who will be willing to fight for him? Who will be willing to do the hours of research necessary for his therapy? Who will be willing to carry out my wishes for his restrictive diet? Who will be willing to devote themselves to hours and hours of paperwork without lapsing or giving up or in?
Good enough is not in the plan for my children, it isn't an option. Is there anyone who will see over the burden and love them as a blessing? When I really sat down to think that question through, I found answers that I didn't care to see. I know that I am not alone in the Autism community when I say; sometimes family is the biggest hurdle. It's hard when those closest to us don't care to learn more about the disability that encompasses our kid's lives. Albeit there are many families that do, I'm generalizing and speaking from experience.
I don't have any fears in life, sans this one. Everything else that is thrown at me I can handle, not being here to see my kids through to adulthood scares the hell out of me.
Do you have a will? Does it provide relief knowing your kids will be taken care of, or anxiety?
Will: "W", A-Z Challenge