The power of hope
No matter where you’re at on your journey of parenting a child with a delay or disability, or what it looks like, there are a few universal truths that we can all relate to. One of these is the power of hope.
This roller coaster ride wasn’t what I expected when I became a parent. Six years in, I’m navigating each dip and rise as best as I can. The longer I’ve been strapped in, the more familiar certain things are becoming. I’m starting to get the hang of how this ride works.
It’s on the bad days – when the ride dips – that hope can fade into the background. You know those days; the ones that don’t go to plan. They might push us past our limits or deliver news we didn’t want. They’re the days that highlight what’s out of our control and remind us that so much is unknown. The future feels so uncertain and overwhelming.
In these times hope doesn’t leaves us though. The truth is that we stop seeing it. Hope doesn’t jump up and down, demanding our attention like our many other challenges. Hope waits to be remembered, smiling, and beckoning us like an old friend.
So, in these hard times, how do you find something you can’t see? For me, it’s by paying attention to what’s happening right now. While I place some hope for the future, anything could change. I’ve learnt that the place where hope actually lives is in moments, right now. The ones happening around you right now with your child and your family.
I’m talking about the moments that surprise us, make our cheeks hurt from laughter and our chest feel like it might explode from joy and pride. They can be personal to you or unique to your child’s situation. They could be subtle or obvious. They can happen organically or be a moment we created for ourselves, our child or family. When we foster these moments, we foster hope in our life. Hope opens us up to live from a place of positivity, love and possibility. That’s the power of hope.
Living with hope is not a cure for anything, we still must face the challenges that life throws at us. But when we choose to live with hope, we live from a place of potential and possibility. It gently stops us from setting limits or deciding too early on what the future could look like, and instead it reminds us to plan and embrace joy right now. It guides us to connect with our family and ourselves, and to strive for the best life possible. That’s the power of hope.
By Bethany Woollatt.
Bethany is a mum to one of the cheekiest kids she knows, who just happens to be taking her on a journey into the world of disability and delays. Having a child who sees the world differently has challenged Bethany to see it differently too. As a result, she threw away the map. Now she’s exploring and embracing this new world, hand-in-hand with her child.
Bethany has a background in marketing and communications. She’s also doing post-graduate studies in inclusion, which she is deeply passionate about, so she can try to bridge the world she used to know with the new one she lives in now.