I choose to work outside the home for a few reasons. On the outside it appears raising a special needs son’s has enough challenges for each day. That is true. However, let me share some thoughts.
As the days turned to years, I got to a point that my world became smaller and smaller. I no longer attended “play dates” with friends. I no longer went to a mom’s group. I no longer home-schooled my older son. I attended few family events. Even for a short time, I no longer attended church. In-home therapy was over. Outside therapy wasn’t working either.
As I enrolled both my children in public school I realized I needed to get out of the house! I needed my world to expand. I needed a change. I needed something that was only a few hours. Upon inventory of my situation and skills, I sought employment from the public school. I applied to work as a Special Education Assistant. I knew my limitations of what I could handle. I was able to be open and honest in my interview.
This decision turned out to be a huge blessing. The skills that I had acquired at home, helped me at work. Also the skills I had learned at work, helped me at home with my son. I learned how to use communication devices. In addition, the sign language skills I learned at home, were used in my job at school. It felt like a win-win.
I am able to bring a unique perspective to work because I live in a home that has a family member with autism. I see life in a new way. I would not be the mom or educator I am without the gift of Tristan.
This is why I have chosen to work outside the home. If you find yourself in a similar situation, consider this as a possibility. There may be a time you could use your unique set of skills and life experiences to help others.