You saw my son, with his big brown eyes and beautiful contagious smile. You watched him run into the park with adventure pulsing through his little body. You saw me follow behind reminding him to be aware and considerate of the couple of kids there, you smiled at me and said hi.
More kids came, the park is getting louder, I’m all out of the snack my son asked for, the blue car he wants is at home, the ice in his cup has melted and now he begins to melt as well. He screams, he threw his green car that just 20 seconds ago he was happily driving around the park. I quickly scoop him up and hold him tight, he starts hitting me. I can feel you watching me, I can see the judgment. He bit me, it broke the skin and I’m bleeding. You’re still watching.
I don’t raise my voice, I don’t get angry. He is the storm and for him, I have to be the calm. This is a sensory meltdown and he is incapable of controlling himself. It will end and he will go back to happily driving around his car, or it won’t end here and I’ll take him to where he feels safe and can come back to me. You might still be watching and that’s ok. You might have hastily taken your child away like others have done and that’s ok too.
This is his battle, this is the battle I pick and it is the one I will always pick. Your judgement is not my battle.
To all of you out there fighting a similar fight, you are not alone.
Fate whispers to the Warrior, you cannot withstand the storm. The warrior whispers back, I am the storm.
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Jessica Felizola wife, mother and nannY
Proudly sporting her ‘Pick your battles’ vintage cap