The Fixer



I’ve tried.  I really have.

But I just can’t seem to get inside his head. 

I have tried to imagine the physical pain that certain sounds bring to his sensitive ears.  I have tried to understand how he processes things.  But I just can’t.  It isn’t for lack of desire or lack of trying.

I believe it.  I know it’s true.  I know he suffers as a result, but I can’t feel it.  I can’t feel it and therefore, cannot understand how to fix it. 

Herein lies my problem:

Inside of me there is this NEED.  This undeniable need–to FIX things.  Now I don’t mean fix things as in “fix the busted microwave”.  I mean, fix the boo-boos in my children’s lives–be they emotional or physical.  I have decided this is an inherited trait.  And I’d like to blame it on my daddy.  He’s an innate “fixer” as well.  He doesn’t deny this.  And now, I guess, neither do I.  I guess by fixing things it makes me feel like I am doing a good job and being a good mom.  And being a good mom means I love my kids.  It validates who I am–the thing I love most about my life–being a mother. 

Here’s how this is a problem: 

Inevitably, there are things–boo-boos, if you will–that are not fixable and maybe they don’t need fixing.  I have said on many occasions that I do not in any way believe that my son is “broken”.  He doesn’t need “fixing”.  I believe that God created him as the masterpiece that he is.  I think I want to fix things so that he can walk through his life and feel proud of who he is, just as he is.  Fix it so there is such a huge influx of kids who want to be his friend that we can’t possibly accommodate all the friendship that is offered.  Fix it so that his life is not so hard for him to navigate. Fix it so that I can alleviate the constant frustration he feels with everyday tasks that seem mundane to many of us. Fix it so that he sees his amazing gifts, abilities and potential.

So, I, in my own power, can’t fix it.  I CAN’T FIX IT.  What does that mean about me?  I find that my inability to fix these things causes me to doubt my abilities as a mother.  Then I start to get sucked into the “vortex of negativity.”  It begins to stir up lies in my mind like, “I’m not good enough, because if I were, I’d be able to make this boo-boo okay.”  Cause that’s my job as a mom, isn’t it? 

Or is it?

Here’s the kicker:

By telling myself that I’m not good enough, am I not doing the same thing to myself that I want my son to STOP doing to himself?  Devaluing myself.  Beating myself up.  Telling myself that I am less than who I really am. 

Maybe I should go think about how I can fix that.  Maybe not. 

I think a big part of being a mom is knowing when to fix stuff and when to let it ride.  It is a very fine line and often so hard to identify one situation from the other.  I ask the Lord every day to give me the wisdom I need to know the difference. 

This mothering business isn’t for the faint of heart.  But then again, neither is just being a human being walking around in this crazy crazy world!




Filed under Autism Days

5 responses to “The Fixer

  1. Wahzat

    I have come back to this particular post because I have been having my own version of this entry for the last few weeks. I have recently put my son through a battery of new assessment just because I wanted to see how he advanced and how he didn\’t… sigh it has been rough, but also quite enlightening. It turns out that my son to be 8 year old son is really only registering as a almost 6 boy and that is rough, but he is so sharp that I will take it.
    I just wanted you to know that I am so happy that I have your blog to turn to fro someone who understands and is experiencing a similar path, but doesn\’t appear to let to get to you. Thank you
     Oh and another way to understand his sensitivity to noise (J) would be to think of how you feel when some one scrapes their nails on a black board ( or white board) how it hurts you to the core of your being.. that is how I think a lot of the noise issues affect our children. 🙂
    Keep keeping the funny

  2. barnyardmama

    I\’ve convinced myself that my job as a mom isn\’t to FIX things.  I came to this conclusion maily because I can\’t fix most of the things that are wrong with Charlie.  I think my job is to be Charlie\’s number one cheerleader.  The person who believes in him even when he doesn\’t.  His safe-haven.  I know that there will be days when this isn\’t enough, but it\’s really all I have.

  3. Wahzat

    Hugs to you my friend… Just as Lena said… it is a Mom thing. i walk the same path as you and know your struggle. At times like this i force myself to focus on the positive and all the things my son can do versus the challenges that plague him and I find that helps push me up the hill.I can share a little about my son\’s dislike for blenders I have figured out that the sound and now the mere sight of a blender makes him feel sick to the stomache something akin to the oversized butterflies you feel when experiencing stage fright… but more intense.Hugs to youG

  4. Lena

    I know it doesn\’t help much, but you aren\’t alone in this never ending battle.
    Many share your frustrations, fears and doubts.  Regardless of the condition/disorder/syndrome.
    It\’s a mom thang.  Chin up. 

  5. Margaret

    Hello Joell
       I feel for you.Being a mother is not always easy,and often we feel in aduquite. And for you there is this pressure to want to make things better.You might want to see deep in your heart and ask yourself ,"do I feel that my son is broken".I\’m sure he is doing his best,and some day you will see the fruits of his life.He has this teenage years to cope with as well like any other child. And he doesn\’t understand what is happening.Trust the Lord to guide you .I know this sounds simple but it\’s not.God works with me,and i\’m most of us are.He will give you strength.
                              Love and HUGS Margret

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