Moment 2 Moment Masterpiece Parenting Blog

Moments of a Special Needs Parent

by: Elizabeth Thorndike

Moments matter. They happen all the time, and if we are present when they happen, we can find the magic within. Sometimes these moments are quiet with tears, and sometimes they are doing a celebration dance at a basketball game. I have had the privilege of taking care of 5 beautiful children. They are not all from my belly, but they live in my heart with full passion and acceptance.

shelby mom feeding tube 2 body

I have had moments where I am up all night rocking a sick little one and, in the midst, thank God for the privilege to sit in that chair. I have cursed the medical that can accompany a diagnosis, and hugged a doctor when tubes came out. I have held the hand of another grieving mother and held a sibling who misses me. I have argued with my husband in pure exhaustion and humbly asked for forgiveness the following morning. I have been “on” for over 13 years and might never be an empty nester, but I would trade none of it.

Moments are what have kept me going. I notice them. I sometimes linger. They are what have made me a better mama and friend. They are rich, powerful, and full. They all add up to one great life, and I salute all you mamas out there. Whether you have fostered, adopted, or birthed your own, you have experienced moments. These moments have at times ached to the core, and at others, brought uncontainable joy.

Shelby Dad Feeding tube Body

I have also, at times, allowed my moments to be overshadowed with thoughts. Thoughts of “what would it be like if…?” I am human. I am flesh. I hold myself in a place of grace as best as I can when these times arise.

I cannot help but wonder that if we lingered one more second in a moment, that we would also hear the soft whispers from God that often guide our mama hearts. The soft whispers that tell us as dads when to redirect, or just give a hug. The soft whispers that carry us in the hard and tell us “Well done” when we get up just one more day and love on our flock.

Moms and dads, my hope for you is that you live this crazy, beautiful, and chaotic life one moment at a time. My wish is that instead of carrying so much of the weight to conquer the world, you rest in the fact that today, you have everything you need. Relish the moments today and hopefully they add up to one surprisingly good day!

Cheers to all of you moms and dads, grandparents, and caregivers! Cheers to the moments!!!!!!

about us

Meet the Thorndikes - Moment to Moment Family

Hi there! We are the crazy cool parents to 5 amazing and crazy cool kiddos. But, first, we are Dan and Elizabeth Thorndike – married 15 years and living this life one moment at a time. We have a full and blessed life, but we are clumsily tackling a journey we never foresaw ourselves living.

Read our story of how this journey all started in our blog post titled:
“The Beginning. Our Special Needs Journey”


Elizabeth Thorndike

Introverted extrovert – that’s how I describe myself. I absolutely love being a mama but never knew how hard it would be, nor how deeply I could love.



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