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“Let Me Know How I Can Help!” (This Will, Because They Won’t)

A House Under Siege Let’s say, hypothetically, flames engulfed my house in the middle of the night. To have my neighbor lean out his window and shout, “Let me know how I can help!” is actually unhelpful.   I know my neighbors are good people. But what would be more helpful? If he ran over with a garden hose, a fire extinguisher, or dragged us away from the fire while his wife called 911. Then,...

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20 Things I Know Now, That I Wish I Knew Then (The Special Needs Parent-Ninja Arts)

    From time to time I get asked, “Do you have any advice for a Special Needs Parent?”  It’s usually from someone freshly reeling from their child’s diagnosis, or a friend who wants to be supportive. BLESS THEM. To which I say (or think), Ohboyohboyboy! (and start mentally salivating.) I devoted this blog on Special Needs parenting to discuss exactly that: The...

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How Superheroes Decompress: Respites & Shawarma (A Tribute to Volunteers)

    Confessions of a Respite Groupie Hello.  My name is Diane.  And I am a self-professed Respite Groupie.  If there’s a church respite event within a 45-minute radius of our home:  We.  Are.  There.  “Neither rain, nor sleet, nor dark of night…”  Whatever, man.  We are there.   It’s the only event I’m ever on time for. It blows my mind that a group...

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How Special Needs Ministry Benefits Volunteers & Churches | Meet Mr. Nick

  In last week’s post, I shared about how Special Needs Ministries are needed to reach the 90% of special needs families who do not attend church.  Most simply can’t.  I also shared a few practical ways that extended –and spiritual– family can help. You can imagine how inclusive churches and special needs ministries bless special needs families like mine.  And as a Special...

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How To Support Special Needs Families & Ministries | BASS Conference 2014

  This is my family.  Over the last ten, post-diagnosis years, these fine folks have looked for excuses to line our pockets, knowing full well we have gaping holes in them.  My parents have provided us with uncountable financial support, particularly during our chaotic Early Intervention Years, when we hemorrhaged money for therapies ($7,000.00 a month out-of-pocket.)  St. Patrick’s...

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Got a Heart for the Disabled? How to OVERWHELM a Special Needs Family

    In summer 2012, our family had the honor of being interviewed by Joni Eareckson Tada.  Getting personal time with Joni and Ken was a privilege already, let alone being featured on her radio program.  But we had no idea that would lead to being selected for the annual Valentines campaign, “Hearts for the Disabled.” Almost a year later on February 14, 2013 we came home to several...

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Faith Through Disappointment – Part 3: GET PEOPLE

    Four-part series, “Faith Through Disappointment” continues. Of the “Four Gets,” the first is to Get REAL:  Giving ourselves permission to grieve or get angry. The second, is to Get HELP:  Be willing to lean on others.  We were not meant to carry our burdens alone. The third, is to Get PEOPLE:  God provides help through people, whether they understand our...

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How to help a SN Parent? Just LISTEN

        Much has been written about how folks get it wrong:  What not to say or do to a special needs parent, or how family fails to support them.  Here’s how a supportive friend got it right.         I have a dear friend named Cindy.  Someone like me might consider Cindy an “unlikely” friend.  Why?  Between Cindy and her husband, they...

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Swim-A-Thon: Let’s Go Team Jeremy!

  As you can see, Jeremy LOVES the water.  His current record is six hours in the swimming pool, coming out only for mandated potty breaks.  But swimming lessons for a pre-verbal kid with autism who requires 1:1 instruction, can be prohibitively expensive.   All the more reason I’m so grateful for SNAP.       What is SNAP? Special Needs Aquatic Program (SNAP) is a...

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Siblings: Support Resources (Sib Panel Pt. 4)

  Part IV in Sibling Panel Series In the first post, we shared our adult Sib Panel’s personal insights at growing up with a special needs sibling.  Earnestly and honestly, they shared their struggles as well as blessings gained. In the second post, we highlighted practical recommendations how parents and families can help support Sibs. In the third post, we shared research provided by...

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