There's a lesson in all of this (I promise, it was worth reading)
In the end, we know it won't be the last struggle we face as a family. Maybe it is nothing compared to the pain others go through. But it did change all of us permanently. Matt and I are better parents and our marriage is stronger. We understand Scott and realize that, by getting to the heart (or hub) of the problem, we could work on a solution.
I am reminded of when Scott was first born and I was in the hospital recovering. The nurses kept bringing him in to breast feed. I was exhausted, overwhelmed, and so afraid of messing up. I would beg them to stay with me, "Is he latched on right? Do you think he's eating?" I would ask each nurse. After awhile I think they must have fought over who was stuck coming into my room. I had read all the books and gone to the classes, but I was still so insecure. At one point during the night I thought, I can't do this. I am not up for it. Everything I had worried about was going to come true and any skeptics I had would be proven right. I couldn't handle it and was going to be a lousy mother after all.
And then the miraculous thing that happens to people when they become parents happened to me. I straightened up and shook off the sleepiness. I stopped thinking about what people thought about me and whether I was doing what the books said to. I concentrated on this baby that had come from my body only hours before. I looked down at Scott and said, "It's you and me kid. We will figure this out together." I held him; I let him sleep; and when he and I were ready, he nursed. I trusted myself, we learned from each other and I became a mother.
When I remember that being a parent is about your relationship with your child. That it is a two way street. You learning from them as much as they do from you. I stay grounded. I stop yelling and demanding. I look for better solutions. I seek first to understand where the child is coming from. I set a good example. And my child shows me the best they can be. And I am the person I want to be. And I know that I am doing it right.
If Scott had never had the pooping problem we would probably never have found out about the SPD. Even when he was having the issues at preschool, we would have blamed the teacher or the setting. Honestly, many people attributed his difficulties to immaturity or lack of home structure. I am sure there are children all over the world who are in the same predicament. I've seen some that I suspect have similar issues who live very close to me.
I see children differently now. When a child acts up, I wonder what might be the cause. I used to silently scold the parents and pity the child. Now I want to ask questions about what is really going on.
As I wrote this I tried to stay on topic about Scott's pooping odyssey. I know it may not seem that way after 4 separate posts! But there is so much to say about this (I could write a book). I want people to know about SPD and the kind of effect it can have on a child. The not so obvious outcome of certain neurological difficulties (hence the tag line: Beyond the Obvious). I also want to emphasize what I learned personally and how the experience changed me and how I view everyone around me. Your child does not have to have a specific ailment in order for you to learn how to be a better parent or a better person in general.
If I tossed in some extra stuff it is because I want to remember all of this. Many people said, "you'll be so happy when this is behind you". Sure, I am glad I don't have to change Scott's pull-ups anymore and it is wonderful not to watch him be in pain each day. I feel that a weight has been lifted from all of us. But I don't want to forget how far we've come and what we've learned. One of the reasons I wrote this is so that I can look here and put it all back into perspective. Our experience is worth sharing. For someone else who might find out something, look at themselves or their children differently.
And for me and my family. To know that we can conquer anything as long as we work together.