Finding My Strength: How my sons’ muscular dystrophy changed me
A couple of years ago, my life took an unexpected turn...
I was heartbroken
How could I ever go back to work?
While contemplating all that we were going to be facing in the future, I had no idea how I was going to be able to return to my full time job as a primary school teacher. Not only was I worried I couldn’t cope with the added workload, I also had no idea how I’d be able to work AND still fit in hospital and specialist appointments and make sure my boys’ needs were met at home, school, and in the community. But more than any of that, I needed to spend every precious minute I could with my children.
So, returning to teaching wasn’t an option, but raising a family on a single income was becoming more impossible every day. We were living paycheck to paycheck, struggling to pay the bills, not being able to go on holidays, and never able to treat our children with special occasions. It wasn’t the life we were hoping for. So I started looking for other ways of bringing in an income. Thankfully, I had a friend who had started her own business, working from home, and…
I realised I could give it a try too
But while I needed this to work, I had every possible doubt run through my head. What if it was a disaster? Where do I even start? How am I going to fit it all in? Do I know enough people? But my heart was saying, what if this is actually the thing that could help us? I had nothing to lose and everything to gain. After taking a closer look, I decided not to let my fears get in the way, and I stepped into the role of mumpreneur! It suited me perfectly. I was able to stay at home with my kids and prioritise their needs, still do school drop off and pick up, and be there for special school events. I began earning a real income while working at times that suited me, and even go on family holidays so my children could experience all the amazing things this world has to offer while they still have the ability to do so. But there have also been some benefits to becoming a mumpreneur that I hadn’t anticipated. After months of negativity after our boys were diagnosed, I found I now had something positive to focus on!
It has become my way of looking after me
Being a mum of children with special needs can often be isolating. It’s easy to feel like you’re in this alone, like no else one understands, or like you’re better off just staying at home because you don’t want to put on a happy face. But now I’ve become part of an amazingly supportive community where I have made so many wonderful friends and where I can just be me. I am so grateful to have these mums in my life, even though they may not ever realise how much it has helped.
It has also taught me that I am capable of so much more than I ever gave myself credit for. I have been able to inspire others as they follow me on a journey of personal development and see me change as I focus on the positives in life. Now I get the most out of my day, have the mental strength to stay on top of my boys’ many needs, and I have the strategies I need to ease my anxiety when things become overwhelming. I am the strong woman that I have always wanted to be and the mum my boys need. My sons’ diagnoses have been the greatest struggle of my life, but everything that has followed has shown me that you can rise to meet every challenge. As many of you who have children with special needs understand, what we face is definitely not easy, but what I’ve learnt in my time so far as a mumpreneur is that with focus, inspiration, support, and a positive outlook, anything is possible.
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