SO YOU’VE GOT A DIAGNOSIS….NOW WHAT?
Mommy or parent “gut” is a powerful thing. No one knows your child better than YOU. In most circumstances you will be the first one that realizes something may not be quite right or amiss with your child. Maybe they’re speaking their first words later than they should. Maybe they’re a late walker. Maybe they’re more tired than usual. Maybe it’s nothing but still needs to be evaluated. Whatever the issue is, getting to the bottom of a possible medical diagnosis with your child can be terrifying. You could suddenly be facing numerous doctors’ appointments and consultations.
What happens when you do get a diagnosis for your child? What’s next?
Whether you are dealing with a minor issue or a life changing event you are going to need to do your research on your child’s diagnosis. You are going to need support and you are going to have to decide if telling family and friends is an immediate consideration. Our family and friends are incredibly important to us; especially when dealing with something highly emotional like a medical diagnosis for your child. Some people, as soon as they hear the news, may want to run and tell everyone they know. You may be so shocked, that talking about it makes you feel better. Conversely, you may be so upset that you need time to process everything before you share with the world. While neither way is the “right” way of doing things sometimes sitting back to take a breather and soak up all of your new information is a good idea.
Do not feel guilty if you choose to keep your news to yourself.
It gives you time to decide on who you want to share with, and time to make a game plan.When most people start doing research on their child’s diagnosis the first thing they usually do is check “Dr. Google”. While this can be a wealth of information for you it can also be incredibly overwhelming. You are going to see worst case scenario on things and possibly drive yourself crazy with worry. However, researching online can also be very powerful. It’s never a bad thing to be armed with information regarding a new situation you are facing. It will be helpful when speaking with medical staff having done your homework. Also, loading up on research may also help you empathize with your child and in turn help them cope. It will give you a better understanding as to what they could possibly be feeling and going thru.
When you receive a diagnosis about your child you are going to need support.
If you have chosen to share with family and/or friends their emotional guidance can be instrumental. You’re going to need your “village” to cry to, vent, help you with carpool, errands, etc. While all of this is important, it can be comforting to be able to share with someone that knows exactly what you and your child are going thru. Someone with the same diagnosis. Most conditions have online support groups. Online support is a good way to seek out information and empathy while remaining anonymous. You can ask questions and possibly discover new therapies or treatments for your child. You may also be able to find information regarding a certain doctor you were considering. If you have a Facebook account, you will find that most conditions have their own page. Online support is a good way to find solace during an uncertain time.
Maybe you knew all along something was amiss but were frozen in fear and then your fears were confirmed. Maybe you had no idea your child was going to receive a certain diagnosis. Either way, when things are confirmed you are going to need help emotionally, physically and spiritually. You don’t have to be a hero and you certainly do not have to face it alone. So do your homework, seek out help and align your “village” for support.