I met another mommy today. One who was fresh from receiving an Asperger's diagnosis for her son.
When I met her, I immediately saw she was the put-together type mom. You know the one. The one who has a beautiful suit on every day and has her makeup just so, always with a matching handbag. She had that formal air about her.
This is not to say I didn't like her. I actually did right way. But I am not that type of mommy. I am much more laid back. I care more about comfort than designer names. I tend to always be rushing and so believe it or not, will show up to events without even brushing my hair (or washing it for that matter.)
But something felt so sad with this mom. Something so fragile. When I said, "I feel like you might need a little extra support," she burst into tears.
And there were other moms there - moms with kids with autism diagnoses, moms with simply quirky kids, moms with kids who get constantly picked on, moms with gifted kids. We were there for a social skills class for our children. (a class I wish ALL kids were required to take by the way, but that is a whole other post)
And of course we reached out to her. And we all shared our stories. About how we were all so proud of our kids. About how we had embraced our kids' differences and celebrated their unique gifts. And we shared about how we support each other when there are rough times - like when our kids don't get included or invited to birthday parties or when they have unexplained meltdowns.
And although we all have positive mindsets now, most of us do remember that feeling - that moment of grief when you realize your child is going to have a more difficult time than others. For some, the grieving and questioning lasts longer. For others, we transition quickly to celebration and acceptance mode. For me personally, I love that my kid is not a cookie-cutter kid.
I don't know which way the new mommy will go, but I do know that when we all left, she brightly called out to us, "See you next week!"