Wanting To Do More And The Pain That Comes With Being Unable To Do So

One of the biggest reasons I get down, even to the point of hating myself, is that I only wish I could do more. I see these great parents writing amazing articles, running marathons, starting charities… I watched the movie Extraordinary Measures in which the father, facing the death of his two children, researches an under funded doctor who may have the cure and he sets out to confront that doctor, sets up a charity, gets the funding, finds the means and ultimately succeeds in getting a treatment found and now his children are still alive because of it.

Super hero stories are all around me where parents do super human things from sharing important information to raising millions… you’d think it would be inspiring.

The fact of the matter is that I’m just a guy… a dad, who works around the clock to simply be able to afford groceries as well as keep the power on. I’m just a guy who doesn’t have a university degree in business or journalism or science… I don’t even have a university degree!! I’m just a dad.

The truth is, no matter how much I can love my children, no matter how much I can sacrifice… I won’t be winning any awards, I won’t be changing the world any time soon.

Loving my children so much should be enough. I really do get it, I really do understand. I am doing what is needed. I have what I need. I am content with the life I have, I am content with the progress that Cameron has made.

But it’s not enough. Having what I need keeps me content. But I still wish for what I want… to really make a difference. To help find that treatment like the guy in the movie did. To find the doctor that has the real answer and help him if I can.

I get down on myself quite often, I just wish I could be more than what I am, have a better education, more skills, more time, more money, more fame to influence….  something, anything.

As it stands now, I get about 5 hours of interrupted sleep each night, and work when I’m not sleeping to afford the life we have. I just can’t do any more and it hurts.

I depend on others. I depend on them to find the answers that I can’t. I depend on them to make the changes that I can’t. I depend on them to be everything I wish I could be.

When Cameron is older, how do I look him in the eye and say “I took care of you, but I really didn’t do anything to help.” ?

About Stuart Duncan

My name is Stuart Duncan, creator of http://www.stuartduncan.name. My oldest son (Cameron) has Autism while my younger son (Tyler) does not. I am a work from home web developer with a background in radio. I do my very best to stay educated and do what ever is necessary to ensure my children have the tools they need to thrive. I share my stories and experiences in an effort to further grow and strengthen the online Autism community and to promote Autism Understanding and Acceptance.

2 Responses to Wanting To Do More And The Pain That Comes With Being Unable To Do So

  1. MrsStuartD July 14, 2010 at 11:38 pm #

    In all things there is love and love shall conquer all. Not every parent needs to be a super hero to be a super dad. Gosh if everyone was super than nobody would be. You know you do more than enough. Give it 100% and it’s enough. It’s enough for Cameron and Tyler. They’ll see it and love you more and more for it.

  2. Amanda Broadfoot July 15, 2010 at 3:29 am #

    Your post brought tears to my eyes. I so relate to everything you say. I question myself constantly about whether I’m doing enough, working hard enough, researching enough, reading enough, taking him to enough therapy, doing more therapy at home, and on and on and on.

    No one is as hard on us as we are on ourselves. And you really do have to cut yourself some slack — and even pat yourself on the back sometimes. You are a loving, hard-working devoted dad and your son, when he’s old enough, will be awed by how much of your heart and time and effort you devoted to him. I’ll guarantee you that your family and friends already are.

    If you can’t pat yourself on the back today, consider this a virtual pat from a fellow autism parent 🙂 Hang in there …

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