We don’t know everything, and we don’t know what we don’t know. We don’t have all the answers, and often we don’t even know what questions to ask. But, with the right resource pool, we can start to figure things out.

Who else loves a good list of resources and suggestions when you need some help?

When someone with a disability enters your life, and they depend on you, all of a sudden you’re clueless. Special needs parents, by osmosis I guess, can figure out how to MacGyver almost anything. But we still need to know who or what is out there to support us as we support our loved ones.

Special Needs Specialties

Two teens with Down Syndrome. The girl, in a pink shirt, has her arms draped around the boy, in a gray shirt. They are both smiling.

Special Needs Portrait Photography has been a dream that I am now living. It’s one of the most fulfilling things I can do for people who struggle with getting beautiful images of themselves or their family members, friends, students, and clients with a disability.

And yet, there is something else I have been wanting to add to my list of services. Like I said, I’m a good problem solver, and that makes me want to solve other people’s problems as well as my own.

So many times in the last 16 years I have been presented with a challenge regarding my son’s care that I just didn’t have the experience to fix right away. So what do I do? I Google. I crowd-source in Facebook groups. I reach out to his doctors, teachers, therapists, my special needs parent friends, or whomever might have an answer or at least a suggestion.

And, on the flip side, I welcome calls from other special needs parents who are facing their latest obstacle. I want to brainstorm with them. I want to give them a list of resources to consult. I want so badly to solve their problem.

An Interactive Resource

I’ve toyed with the idea of adding a general resource list to my website, limited to professionals and programs with which I and my son have personal experience. In other words, I want to offer my recommendations to other families looking for disability support. This project has been on the back burner for a while. Recently, I found a better way to reach more people and suggest more services for them to check out on their own. I found a way to be that resource.

The Special Needs Survival Podcast

Last Fall I had the honor of being interviewed by Annette Hines, a special needs attorney and advocate, on her international podcast, Parenting Impossible: The Special Needs Survival Guide. What a humbling experience, and a valuable opportunity for me to share what I do and why I do it. (Want to hear my episode? Here’s a link!)

And she has interviewed so may guests…parents, siblings, disabled individuals, teachers, authors, legislators, advocates, financial planners…the list goes on. I guarantee you will find a few episodes that spark your interest.

Back to my Side-Gig

Between chatting with Annette and listening to other episodes, I got super excited about the network she has created, and I started sending her names. As a medical mom, I am just a little entrenched in the special needs world (ha!) I am fortunate to have met countless people who would be great guests, people who I knew could offer essential resources to her listeners.

On top of the guests I proposed, there was a long list of people who were requesting to be a part of this community. So many, in fact, she decided to delegate. And now, Yours Truly has taken on the role of finding and booking a wide variety of guests for the podcast and her newest endeavor, the Circle of Care. This community offers a place for people in the disability world to ask questions, offer suggestions and support, share frustrations and celebrations, and generally find their village.

And THAT, my friends, is the most powerful resource. That village. Do you agree?

Be Our Guest

If you are interested in being a guest on the Parenting Impossible podcast or in the Circle of Care community, please email me at parentingimpossible@gmail.com.

And when you are ready for photos, I’ll help you plan your session!

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