Monday, May 21, 2007

Parent Letters

Huge and long-overdue thanks to all you terrific moms and dads and other assorted family members who have written me during the past year to tell me how my book is changing your lives, and the lives of your children.

One of the best parts of my work is connecting with other parents all over the country. I wrote this work for you, so it's been a blast connecting with so many of you these past months. I've listened to your heartfelt stories in major cities and the suburbs, in neighborhood cafes and airports, in television and radio stations as I prepared to be interviewed, and even in bookstore bathrooms!

We've shared tissues and tears and laughter and big hugs. Your words of struggle and success have touched me deeply, and provided me with the kind of powerful inspiration and motivation that allows me to continue my passionate work in light of my son's death.

Too many times your heartfelt words have reminded that as a nation, we have a long way to go to better serve this important population and their dedicated, often overwhelmed families. Like many of you, I'm doing what I can to help change that harsh reality. There is more than enough work to go around. Take on the piece that you can.

One amazing reality has become incredibly clear to me: There are lots of good folks taking on the challenges of special needs parenting with no experience or training, and doing so with remarkable determination and guts, and a whole lot of love for their children, no matter how tough the challenges those children present. I salute each and every one of you for the battles you take on each day for your children, especially when those demands go way beyond just being tough.

As I take a bit of breather and lighten up my travel schedule this summer to recover from the hectic pace of the past year (and to work on my tan!) I will be sharing some of your thoughts, including about my book. Thanks to those who have already shared their words and their permission.

If you want a forum to share your special needs parenting successes and topics for discussion, please email me through the form on my website, but no attachments, please. I won't open them. Put your message/photos in the body of the email. I'll do my best to share your words in the hope they will support others in their daily special needs challenges. You will increase your chances of seeing your wisdom appear in print if you stay brief and concise in your emails.

In the meantime, stay strong and focused. Keep laughing!
And give your child an extra big hug for me.
Breakthrough Parenting for Children with Special Needs: Raising the Bar of Expectations

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