In my happy place! Sitting in my window seat – if you have been reading my blog you know that is where I love to be. Quietly writing or knitting or reading, while kids are occupied. Today I am writing while the boy is in the oversized armchair playing happily with his iPad. LOVE that Elmo app, it is educational and keeps him engaged for such a long time.
No, I am not a parent that usually gives tons of screen time to my kids. My other kids get 20 minutes a day after all their schoolwork is done. The boy is an exception. We realized that this Elmo’s ABC’s app was reaching the boy and he was actually learning about letters, sounds and such. The bonus? I get time where he is not wandering around the house looking for things to get into. Opening all the cabinets and asking for every snack in the place until I am utterly exhausted from following him. The other option, putting movies in the DVD player. No sooner have you put Thomas in then he wants you to take it out and put in Veggie Tales. You switch them and before it even has time to load he wants me to put a different video in. Standing there for an hour changing DVDs is trying on my patience.
So yes, I let him have the device as long as he wants. He is practicing coloring, tracing, putting together puzzles and many other activities while playing. He has some videos on there, WordWorld, Little Einsteins and some classic flicks like Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and Mary Poppins – but for the most part it is interactive.
So happy day, I get to sit here and write while I remind myself that with Autism in the house the rules are different. I am not a bad mom for letting my son have lots of screen time. I am not a bad mom for taking some time to myself to decompress and relax. I am not a bad mom – I am taking care of myself so that I can me an engaged and giving mom the rest of the day.
You need to do the same – especially if you have a special needs child or adult in your life. Burnout isn’t fun. Been there, done that. They say an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure – NO JOKE.
YOU are not a bad parent for taking a little time to yourself
It is something you need to do – I speak from experience. It took almost 9 years before I crashed. You may be okay today. You may be okay tomorrow. If you ignore yourself, the burnout will come – and it won’t be pretty.