I knew that becoming a parent meant juggling a number of different roles. I am the mom, the planner. The guiding light. I am the ouch-y healer and the bedtime snuggler. I am the confidence booster and the ultimate cheerleader. And because my son is a puzzle; I am also the puzzle master.
When my son was diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder at 2 years old, we began unlocking the complex puzzle that is his brain. We did not know what to do with the pieces. We did not know where to start. We were scared. Scared of the pieces. Scared that the pieces may never fit together.
And, in that moment we could have given up. But we did not. Because the rules of parenting are actually quite simple:
Rule 1: Love your children fiercely. No matter what.
Rule 2: Protect your children and keep them safe. No matter what.
Rule 3: Be what they need you to be. No matter what.