Parents who are raising children with special needs are often tired, exhausted, hanging by a thread, and at the end of their hoarded resources. Parenting needy children is hard, hard, hard work. Period. Where can parents go for help? Not physical help with the care of the child, but where can they go for help so that they no longer feel as if they are about to explode. The author asks, “Where can we go for solace? For rest and refreshment? For an infilling of joy? We know where to find those things for our kids, but where do we find them for ourselves?”
Kathleen Deyer Bolduc’s book The Spiritual Art of Raising Children with Disabilities offers a plethora of concrete suggestions. These suggestions include the practice of several spiritual disciplines, which can be proactively used by everyone, not only parents of special needs children. The author’s personal life and experiences provide credibility in what she writes; Kathy is a mother of a disabled son, a spiritual director, and woman of faith.
The five sections of the book include: Gathering Up the Broken Pieces; Embracing Our Brokenness; Rearranging the Pieces to Make a New Creation; The Bigger Picture: The Mosaic as Community Art; and Tools of the Mosaic Artist: An Introduction to Spiritual Disciplines. The 21 chapters offer a lesson, a real live example, and a reflective exercise. You may find yourself laughing and crying all within the same chapter; but in the end you will be encouraged and equipped with tools for life.
-Submitted by Janice A. Howard, Colonel