Through the curiosity that is Twitter, I met Lisa at Deep Waters. She’s a life coach for, and this is truly kismet in its finest form, moms of gifted kids. And lives about 30 minutes from me. Today, browsing through my tweets (and WTF is going on with Twitter today? Is MacWorld really screwing with it that badly?), I noticed she had posted a note asking:
If you’re a woman who happens to be a mom of 1 or more gifted kids, what would you say your greatest need is?
Well, there’s no way in hell that I could answer that in 140 characters or less. Actually, I can barely answer that question on this blog, and there ain’t no limit here!
But I’ll try. Because I’m sure she has a reason for asking and I don’t know if I’ve actually thought that question through. It’s hovered around in the back of my mind, but I don’t think I’ve dug into it.
So what do I need as a mom of 1 or more gifted kids? I’ll tell ya what I need.
I need acknowledgment that giftedness is more than just book smart, school smart. That giftedness comes in all shapes and sizes.
I need recognition that twice-exceptionalities are a freaking pain in the ass. That a child may be gifted and still have to deal with ADHD or sensory processing issues or medical issues related to ADHD/SPD that hold him back and make him appear to be less gifted. That a child may have a speech delay and therefore is more introverted and his light doesn’t shine as brightly because he is difficult to understand.
I need other parents to quit giving me that look if I mention something about one of my sons and the difficulties associated with 2e. You know the look: how hard can it be? Your kid is so smart!
I need support from the school, a wonderful school that has a GT focus but still doesn’t really dig into GT until 3rd grade. Apparently giftedness only appears when you’re eight, like a magic fairy that twinkles down from above. I need the school to help me, really help me help my son. I need the teachers to recognize that writing is extremely difficult for him for several reasons and that should not hold him back from the areas where he really shines.
I need to grow a backbone so I can advocate for my son from the perspective of a parent, and not from the perspective of a teacher who has 35 kids in her class.
I need to know if my sons really are gifted, or if I’m just deluding myself. I’m around them all the time and after awhile you just don’t know anymore.
I need help with the homework battle, before it starts to kill A’s love of learning.
I need a local support group of other moms of 2e kids, so that I have that community around me. I need others around who are on this path, so that I can vent and get help and give help and not get that look.
I need help parenting these two amazing sons I have, to parent their entire selves and not just the gifted part and not just the challenging part.
And I need help not losing my mind while developing those of my sons.
So, Lisa, I guess I don’t have just one greatest need. I’m still early in this journey of giftedness and the needs are so great and so varied.
One more day to enter the “Only in Iowa” contest. Go drag your mind through the gutter!