As a health care provider I always thought seeing improvements in my patients was the most rewarding part of my job. However, this was until I started treating autistic children and found myself embroiled in daily trials and tribulations of the patient’s families.
To be the parent of an autistic child is one of the hardest and most demanding jobs imaginable. If they don’t keep their eyes on these children continuously, parents may find themselves scouring their neighborhood for a kid who ran out of the house, or they might be jumping into a like retrieving their child, or they might be at Home Depot buying paint to cover the “artwork” that adorns their living room or anyone of the many walls in their house.
Of course re-painting is an easy fix compared to the daily challenges these parents must face. For example: Enforcing special diets for their autistic child, constantly running to and from a variety of therapy sessions, implementing the use of supplements, trying new ways to hide these supplements so they can get them down their kids throats, and most importantly and most frustrating, a constant search for specially trained educators since there seems to be an overwhelming lack of experienced professionals in our schools to educate these remarkable children.
Then of course, are the sneers and snide remarks parents and family members have to endure on a daily basis from suddenly the people, who you thought were your support, and making every excuse not to see you and your child.
Parents bring their special children here every day for their hyperbaric oxygen therapy treatments and almost every day I am confronted with a distresses, depressed, angry, frustrated or crying parent. These parents spew their feelings to me for hours, and yes, sometimes for days and every one of them are so grateful to me for allowing them the opportunity to vent or cry.
Truthfully, I find it somewhat perplexing, because I don’t say much, all I do is listen. What I’ve come to realize after treating 100’s of autistic children and meeting their families, is being here for the family and watching them leave with a smile on their faces is just as rewarding as treating the children and hearing new words come out of their mouths.
To all my wonderful kids and extraordinary families, I love you all.
My name is Hope Fine, Founder and Clinical Director of South Florida Center for H.O.P.E. a premier Hyperbaric Oxygen Center – located in Deerfield Beach, Florida. If you have any questions – E-mail me at email@example.com