Everyone with kids knows how hard it is to get anything done with them around. One of my favorite sayings: cleaning your house with kids around is like brushing your teeth while eating Oreos. Truth. It's hard enough to do the things we don't maybe love to do even BEFORE we have kids.
But throw any type of special needs kid in and the difficulty increases exponentially. Everything becomes an emergency. Probably the special needs parent has learned to cope so well under pressure, that they thrive on it and thus put themselves in situations that create the stress they crave. You know, like booking 17 things in one day, or leaving things til the last minute. And when there is a moment to relax away from research, paperwork, therapy, heads spinning, you have to choose to take it, or get shit done. Depends on the shit, really, so you have to weigh the importance. Sometimes just letting shit go will make you a helluva lot happier than stressing about it.
For those with kids, think how disastrous your house gets when one of your kids has an illness. There are snot rags littering the floor, dirty bathrooms, unmade beds, laundry piled up, everyone wears PJs all day, showers are optional, dishes are dirty. Shoot, this could be me anyway. But then consider your child being ill ALL THE TIME. And while you get used to it and adapt, sadly, there has to be a level of acceptance into the chaos of your life or you'll go batshit crazy. Hopefully both parents reach the same level of acceptance together, or you'll drive EACH OTHER batshit crazy.
So if you come to my house and see faded toys and chairs scattered around the yard, and a kiddie pool still containing water even though it's October, don't judge. Consider, perhaps, that my old quirky dog detests water bowls but will drink from the kiddie pool, and I can't handle the added stress of getting her to drink, so we leave out the kiddie pool.
If you see our garage halfway cleaned out, and all the crap that needs to be sorted or thrown away is strewn around the front, consider the fact that the people we hired to do it never came back, and my husband only takes one day off a week. The kids and I would much rather have him spend time with us rather than out in the garage.
If you notice my dining room table has several stacks of paperwork for a really long time, then I tell you I cleaned and you see it stacked into 3 neat piles...you should understand that they are organized into "stuff that needs to be dealt with", "stuff that needs to be filed", and trash. And the trash pile will get to the trash can next time I walk that way with empty hands.
If you notice there are always dishes in my sink, consider the fact that they actually haven't been there that long, but that I cook food for my child constantly, so as soon as dishes are done, they are dirty immediately.
So instead of looking at our house that needs painting, TV that needs hanging, deck that needs fixing, cars that need washing, grass that needs tending, stink bugs that need vacuuming, windows that need cleaning, toys that need picking up, light bulbs that need replacing, laundry that needs folding, dogs that need bathing, etc etc etc ad infinitum....and thinking: 'wow, these people are rednecks', perhaps consider thinking: 'wow, these are some happy and really well adjusted people!'
And be glad you're not our neighbors. ;) And if you ARE our neighbors...well...be glad we're all a mile a part and there's a healthy tree line.