Yes I Can be a Parent

Parenting is a full time job! Sometimes it tests you and may take all you have in you to keep them alive, fed, and happy. When you factor in a spinal cord injury or a diagnosis such a Spina Bifida or Multiple Sclerosis, it definitely adds a level of difficulty to an already tough job. Luckily, the joy that comes from having a little face light up at your voice and little hands that reach to you to find comfort, far outweighs the hard work required! As they grow, the feeling of pride that swells inside as you see them becoming their own person is unrivaled. Parenting from a chair or with a debilitating condition, requires you to reach in your tool box and employ some creativity, patience, and adaptations; but Bardcare wants you to know that you can thrive as a parent!

Here are some tips/tricks that the Bardcare team uses on a daily basis to survive life as a parent.

  • Involve your kids in helping where they can! Kids love to feel a sense of accomplishment. In this, you are teaching them responsibilities as well as lightening your load.
  • Be smart with clothing for babes/toddlers. If you have dexterity issues, avoid clothes with tons of snaps or buttons. Leslie shares that she used to love to put her boys in overalls because it made it easier to scoop them up!
  • Try to pick your battles! Give yourself some grace! Learn to be ok with a little mess at times if it means you are having fun as a family!
  • Ask for help from others when needed or when you can! Whether it is a friend giving you a hand around the house, or taking the kids to practices or appointments, or even hiring someone to help around the house every now and then; it means freeing you up to have more time and energy for your family, it is worth it!
  • Look online at some good crockpot freezer meals! If you are having a day that isn’t adding up, you can pull one out, throw it in the crock pot, and let dinner cook itself!
  • Embrace the power of saying no! Don’t try to do everything! Just because an activity or event is a “good thing”, it doesn’t mean it is what is best for your family at the time.
  • With a baby in the house, find an adapted crib or modify one on your own! With a few hinges and a little time, you can make a swing away side to be able to easily access your little one. Find one of the many tutorials online for step by step directions.
  • Find a dresser that you can wheel under to convert to a changing table.
  • While they are young, utilize a highchair on wheels to get the baby around the house at times to make things easier! They can eat and have playtime from it.
  • Don’t let your mind get bogged down with wondering what your kids may be “missing out on” due to family limitations. In reality, your kids will be well rounded, learn responsibility and empathy, and learn to adapt to the world around them in ways that other kids may not!

Parenting is a hard but rewarding job! We hope these tips help make your journey as a parent a little easier!

The opinions and experiences presented herein are for informational use only. Individual results may vary depending on your condition. Always consult with your health care professional. These individuals have been compensated by Bard Medical for the time and effort in preparing this article for BARD’s further use and distribution.