Take Care Title

Special Needs Moms Need to Take Care of Themselves

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Take Care Title

Make Yourself a Priority

It’s natural to put your child ahead of yourself. However, special needs moms need to take of themselves, too.

Think of it like the flight attendants say in their spiel.

“Place the mask on your own face before helping others.”


Keep your mind busy with things other than your child. Maybe it’s reading, volunteering, genealogy, doing crossword puzzles, antiquing,  knitting, or gardening. This will help keep away “Mommy Syndrome” (having nothing else to think or talk about besides your kiddos and their issues).


Feed your spirit at its very core. Maybe it’s a few minutes each morning meditating, stepping outside to take in our world, deep breathing, or praying. Just find something that calms you and helps you focus on something much bigger than you are. This will help keep you renewed and keep away burnout.


Take care of your physical health. You know what it takes — eating healthy, staying active, getting to the doctor (and dentist). You’re not going to last forever. But, you need to do what you can to be there for child as long as you can.


My Epic Fail

I’ve always done a pretty good job of taking care of my mind. I keep up with current events and politics. I’ve always been a writer of one sort or another, first journaling then writing my book and blogging here. I’m usually reading something (not always a novel, but something). I spend time being artistic either painting or scrapbooking. I’m a chronic volunteer, at school, the girls’ activities, the community, and church.

I’ve been a bit hit or miss on the spirit part until about ten years ago. I was often stressed out and overwhelmed with too much on my “to do” list and not enough down time. Then I joined a new church and found a whole new perspective on my faith. I learned to slow down and tend to my faith. I usually spend a few minutes in quiet time with my coffee each morning. I think about my day and consider who I know that is in need of prayer. I’ve learned to appreciate the beauty of the world around me. And overall in life, I just have a slower pace and don’t get nearly as stressed out.

Then there’s the body…

This is embarrassing, but I’m fat. Not just overweight. F-A-T. Fat.

I see pictures of myself or catch a rare glimpse of myself in a full-length mirror and gasp. Who is that fat lady? Wait… That’s me!

The cause of my weight is a simple combination of the usual culprits. I eat too much and not the healthiest of things. I don’t exercise (at all). And that  glass or two of wine I like most evenings doesn’t help.

I wasn’t always like this. I was pretty average sized growing up, in college, and early in our marriage. I had Ashley and never really lost the weight. I had Brielle and never lost all of that weight. Then, I just sort of added on the pounds after that.

About six years ago, I lost 70 pounds in six months. Yep. It was pretty amazing. I ate less, ate healthy foods, worked out, and became totally compulsive about it. Then, I burned out and within a year I gained almost all of it back again.

Take Care Pic


For someone who has so much of her life in order, I’ve let this get completely out of control.

I know I have to do something about it. Brielle needs me. What would happen if I wasn’t here for her? Not only do I care for her (as in, when she’s not in school) and take care of nearly every need she has (bathing, dressing, toileting, etc.), I am her communication conduit. I am the only one in her life she can truly and fully communicate with. I interpret every word she signs for friends, strangers, and even family. More than anything, I love her and she deserves for me to do my best to be here for her for as long as I can.

Certain things are nearly completely out of our control. Car accidents. Cancer. Old age. But, this is in my control.


So, plain and simple, it’s time to do something about it.


P.S. This is clearly one of those posts where I hope you’ll do as I say and not as I do. Cuz I’m living here as a bad role model on this one.


* If you’re visiting from one of these awesome LinkUps, let me know and I’ll be usre to share some comment love!


Any weight loss advice for this fat lady?


Kerith Signature

11 thoughts on “Special Needs Moms Need to Take Care of Themselves”

  1. First, you’re beautiful. Truly. Second, I need to lose some weight too and don’t really have any tips but the usual. It is a huge bummer though that it used to be so much easier to lose weight when I was younger than it is for me now. And I’m with you on the glass of wine most nights – I love that and do not want to give it up. You’re very right that we need to stick around for as long as possible for our special kids and sometimes, I get really freaked out that I’m not doing more to keep my physical body healthier. Sigh. I just need to get motivated. Here’s to us getting motivated and being healthy for our kids!!

    1. Here’s to getting motivated indeed. I think I’ve got the start of that thing, but the road ahead is so long and difficult. I know I’ve done more, but this… (sigh). Thanks for the encouragement, friend!

  2. Visiting from Make a Difference Mondays and wow, did I need to hear this. I don’t think you’re being a bad role model at all. You’re just being a very real mom facing issues with weight that so many of us other real mamas face. Thanks so much for being open and honest about it. I haven’t been taking care of my body the way I should and I’m really starting to notice a difference in my health – and my kids need me – so, it’s time to do something. Getting to that point is always the first step, right?

  3. I’m sitting here crying over this post because I totally relate to those feelings we deal with everyday. I can remember when my husband and I were really happy and without a care in the world. I was fit, healthy, and whatever came our way, we just got over it, and moved on. Having children with special needs really does a number on us physically and mentally, and it’s only through daily spiritual healing offered by the grace of God and those small miracles that happen everyday that keeps us going.

    1. I’m so with you, Donna. When I think back to “before”, I am just amazed at how carefree we were, mostly emotionally. Even though things for us are so much better/easier than they were when Brielle was younger, that emotional strain is still there. Despite that, we are called by Him to take care of ourselves and it is for the benefit of us and those around us to do just that. Keep on keeping on!

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