What did I do wrong?

Parenting seemed so easy when I had my first child. She was easy to take care, healthy, obedient and smart ;-) That made me think that any child who misbehaved must be a result of poor parenting till I had my second child. She was a 360 degrees turn for me. She was a demanding baby, diagnosed epileptic at 1.6 yrs old and declared intellectually disabled at 16. At that age, she was neither able to read and write nor perform tasks designed for kids in the 5-6 years age group. Uncontrolled and unpredicted seizures were worrying. Tantrums and not learning like other kids were also getting me stressed up and hopeless. Questions like what did I do wrong, why do I have to go through all this etc etc ran through my mind very often.

I was forever trying to balance my life between career, family and extended family. It was really tough. With no one to share this with it was really a dark and lonely road to travel. Family members were either still in denial or think/hope that things will get better as time goes by.

During the first 5 years of my struggle to settle down in life, my poor first child of 7 years difference was forced to be independent. Worse is she would be blamed when my younger girl threw her tantrums so before I knew it, she was slowly closing up to be in a world of her own. Fortunately I realised my mistake early enough to rectify it before I lost her completely.

So with all those firefighting issues, where am I today? I can safely say that I am a more capable person today than I would have been. Through trying to salvage my relationship with my elder girl, I have learnt that good parenting does not have to be strictly a mum and daughter relationship. Respect can be equally earned when she looks up on you as a friend and mum at the same time depending on the situation. My special girl, on the other hand, opened up my eyes to see that if I think my life is bad, there are others worse off than me. She also gave me a chance to learn many more things that I would never have bothered to spend time on if she did not exist. So all-in-all, I am lucky to have 2 beautiful girls to guide me. One of them taught me how to build a long lasting parent child relationship that I can treasure and another who has made me a more knowledgeable and forgiving person. Both of them are the people who makes up The Best of Me ;-)
Joyce Moi