I often marvel at the dedication and commitment that ALL parents have for their children. We long for them to reach great heights. We want them to have confidence in themselves. We sacrifice our own needs and desires in order to help them succeed in life. But, when you have a child that has a learning disability, this longing is magnified.

Today I sat with the parents of my student at our end of year meeting to discuss their child’s successes in NILD Educational Therapy.

  • We celebrated her academic gains.
  • We highlighted her improved self-esteem and confidence.
  • We laughed as we noted her spirited personality.
  • We discussed new goals and dreams for the upcoming year.

… and I left the interview with deep respect for these parents!

The task of parenting a child with a learning disability can be puzzling. Often this “invisible disability” does not become obvious until a child reaches school age. And it seems that without specific educational intervention, each year that goes by gets more and more discouraging. For these parents, there are always concerns and questions at the forefront of their mind:

  • Is there something else that I can do to help my child?
  • How can I help my child’s teacher understand her challenges?
  • How do I encourage my struggling child on this road to independence?
  • Will he be able to get his highschool diploma?

Parents of kids with learning disabilities don’t know what the final chapter of education will look like for their child. Their dreams may not come to fruition. But, do you know what I saw today in this interview?

  • I saw parents with deep commitment to their child.
  • I saw parents that dig deep to find the resources to help their child be successful at this thing
    called ‘education’.
  • I saw parents that have met with the school yet again to try to help them understand their child’s needs.
  • I saw parents that have spent hours doing homework after a long day of work and dinner preparation and soccer practice.
  • I saw parents as cheerleaders celebrating their child’s triumphs.
  • I saw parents that provide a place of safety for their child when the task at hand is too overwhelming.

And who really understands or cares more about the child than the parents?

Today, I am thankful for the privilege of walking alongside these parents as I administer Educational Therapy with this child, doing what I can to help launch her on the road to independence.