Finding Ninee » Sharing our parenting and special needs stories with heart and humor.

Truth, Hindsight, and Being a Special Needs Mama

Ok first, friends, I have less than 20 minutes to write this post as I’ve been working on something else today, which I am excited to announce here and promise to do so soon. I say this because holycrapwow, I didn’t have time to do Finish the Sentence this week the way that I wanted to. I thought about it and had high hopes for it. Sometimes though, life gets in the way. Thank you for coming anyway. 


“Please grow…” I whispered in the dark. My baby was so tiny. His thighs were smaller than my wrists. He was born with a healthy height and weight, but his percentages were off. While his height was in the 90th percentile, his weight was at 18%. His tiny tummy was more muscular than pudgy. He had baby abs. He was perfect. 

Mom laying with new baby on bed

See his tiny chicken legs?

Truth, Hindsight, and Being a Special Needs Mama

“I want abs!” he says, sucking in his little boy gut while flexing in front of the mirror. “I want to be mega-strong.” His abs are not really abs; he’s six. Since infancy, his weight has caught up to his height, and I no longer whisper “grow.” I still whisper “please?” in the dark though. Maybe all mamas do. 


People say that hindsight is 20/20. “If I’d only have known…” I think back to moments in my life that I regret and the choices I’ve made. I wonder whether those choices would be different had I’d known the truth. As a not old-old, but not-so-young people, my friends and I joke about revisiting youth, knowing what we know today. 

I’ve wished for do-overs. Imagine junior high and high school, knowing what we know today. Those awkward years would’ve been a whole lot easier. I’d stick with my fashion decisions though because the 80’s were awesome. 

The 80

Mostly though, I don’t wish for do-overs any longer. 

Had I not walked away from the bad boy, I would not have found the good ones. 

Had I known that Chiefs death would leave a 90-pound shepherd-shaped hole in my life, I still would have chosen the years that I had with him.

If I hadn’t married my first husband, I’d never have known his family. I’m better for loving his family. For loving him. For knowing what I know now because of that experience.

Had I known the truth about my son’s developmental and speech delays earlier, would I have done anything different? How much does each moment and potential regret define now-me? In some ways, I think I always knew. After all, there’s a reason I devoured every book available on developmental delays, speech delays, and autism when my son was an infant. Maybe though, we came into knowing as we were ready to. After all, he started speaking. He went to the right preschool for him. We found grace in kindergarten. And today, he wants abs.

Life has turning points, and I know that we look back on them with wonder and occasional regret. I also know that each choices make us who we are. I cherish that. Without them, I may not have this boy. This life.

Had I known the truth about Apple stock back then though…

Past moments give us today -

This has been a Finish the Sentence Friday post with the sentence”Once I knew the truth…”
Your hosts are
Me, as always (Kristi from and this week’s sentence thinker-upper, Leah from Little Miss Wordy

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  • JT Walters - Once I knew the truth I’d have done exactly what I did. I have done everything I know how to help my son. As you know he just received the diagnosis of (LKS) far too late for the IVIG to give him his words. I just pray he does not have a third rare disease.

    I have been criticized for only hearing what I want). That is not true at all. I believe remaining optimistic is a force multiplier. Being pessimistic in our situation is counter productive. And just because some says something to me does not mean I am required to respond especially if it is negative.

    I’d change nothing because I honesty embraced everything I could get for my son. We flew to Ohio for healthcare for years.

    Everything I have done was in the best interest of Alex.February 18, 2016 – 10:38 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - You’re so right that being pessimistic is counter-productive. You are an amazing mama. Truly.February 19, 2016 – 3:50 pmReplyCancel

      • JT Walters - We are all amazing parents and should support each other on our respective journeys celebrating each and every achievement because they mean so much more in our world. We never take our children’s achievements for granted.February 19, 2016 – 4:37 pmReplyCancel

  • Linda Atwell - Out One Ear - Yes, yes, yes. I love the line, “each moment that leads us to now makes us who we are,” because it is so true. If we would have taken a different path, made a different decision, would we be who we are or a different version of who we are? I don’t want any do-overs either–although hindsight does offer fresh wisdom. Oh well, can’t wait to hear what you are working on. I’m sure it is super exciting, awesome, incredible!February 19, 2016 – 1:08 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Thanks Linda! You’re so kind! Where are you these days anyway? Are you back from sunny Mazatlan??February 19, 2016 – 4:27 pmReplyCancel

  • Janine Huldie - Aw, so much truth here and like you I have sometimes wondered what if with certain things only to remind myself that it all indeed happened for a reason and shaped me into the person I am today. That said I wouldn’t go back to change any of it. Also, so excited for you and can’t wait for the big announcement nowFebruary 19, 2016 – 3:13 amReplyCancel

  • Lizzi Lewis - With hindsight, I think I’m glad not to have known about the darkest times – I don’t think I would have got out of bed. Maybe ever. I doubt I would have anticipated having the strength (or, more importantly, the support) to get through them. Yet we face unknowns, we strive, we do our best, and we make mistakes (or not) which shape the future-us, even as the now-us is shaped by what happened before, and our attitude to it.

    We still only have Now.

    I’m excited that your Now has such big things happening in it.

    (and 20 minutes, huh? 😉 )February 19, 2016 – 7:29 amReplyCancel

  • Sufian - Hi,

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    Muhammad SufianFebruary 19, 2016 – 8:25 amReplyCancel

  • Michele - So much to say. First, I can’t wait to see what you’re cooking up that you’re going to reveal soon! Second, I love the mental picture of Tucker flexing in the mirror, wanting to be “mega-strong.” That is so awesome. And finally – don’t you sometimes think of life as one of those “choose your own adventure” books? Like, if I hadn’t moved here when I did, or taken that job when I did, or, or, or…but we can’t look back and instead, like you say, can only be grateful for the choices that brought us to where we are today. I’m grateful that all of our choices brought us to LTYM at the same time! xoFebruary 19, 2016 – 9:54 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Aw thanks for reading, Michele. I ended up changing this post but the message remains that our paths do take us to who we become. I, too, am so very glad that Listen to Your Mother brought us together!! 🙂February 19, 2016 – 5:45 pmReplyCancel

  • Kerri Ames - This morning as I was walking out the door, Bridget said: Bye mom, love you. My heart burst open. Remember when all I wanted her to do was say mom? It was worth all the hard work in speech therapy. I so love this post, because language matters and these milestones count so very muchFebruary 19, 2016 – 1:05 pmReplyCancel

  • Kenya G. Johnson - If we went back to do over, we wouldn’t have the things (or people) who have contributed to who we are today. I’ve had Christopher 11 years and his existence has made such an impact on my life. So yes yes yes – “each moment that leads us to now makes us who we are.”

    Anyway, life is getting in the of me writing an FTSF post, I just can’t even with 20 mins. I wish I could! I’d post more often.

    Can’t wait to hear the details of your announcement!February 19, 2016 – 2:08 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Kenya, it’s so true how much our kids impact our lives and give new meaning to everything. Also, the linkup stays open until Sunday. I so hope you’ll link up. By the way, I’m super excited as I ordered CC2 today!! WHOOT!February 19, 2016 – 5:47 pmReplyCancel

  • Emily - Yup, I knew too. There’s something about a mama’s instinct that overrides everything else. Oh and I’m with Tucker – I want abs too! 🙂February 19, 2016 – 2:20 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - It’s funny how much we know without knowing, isn’t it? And I want abs too!February 19, 2016 – 5:48 pmReplyCancel

  • Nandhini Srinivasan - @Kristi Campbell Whenever I feel depressed or have doubts about myself,I come and read your blog.It makes me feel so much better.Thank You.Fellow Special Needs Mama.February 19, 2016 – 4:08 pmReplyCancel

  • Christine Carter - Well, my dear- you seem to have a gift that proves itself once again here. With so little time, you manage to pull off THIS? Wow. I love the way you think, the way you write… and the message you always seem to share within your words. You made me think about Cass and all those what ifs… I have many regrets I wish I had the knowledge and confidence as a mom to help her, heal her, and trust my own gut more. I wish I didn’t let all the doctors and nurses and therapists TERRIFY me and I wish I didn’t believe some of the things they said. But I didn’t know anything, so I trusted them. BUT I learned. I managed. And I thank God my girl is well now.February 19, 2016 – 5:13 pmReplyCancel

  • Live By Surprise - Gawd yes. Every day I whisper “please”. Every day.February 20, 2016 – 2:24 amReplyCancel

  • Allie - He want’s abs? Me too! I love that kid!February 20, 2016 – 11:22 amReplyCancel

  • Tamara - The Apple stocks. Yes. And the 2008 stock market crash. I still get so annoyed.. but I musn’t think about it.
    Instead I’ll think of perfect babies with abs.February 20, 2016 – 3:48 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Perfect babies with abs. 😀 Love. And yeah, I can’t think about that stuff too much either. No regrets, right? RIGHT. right. RIGHT.February 21, 2016 – 2:20 pmReplyCancel

  • Pat B - What a beautiful photo of you and your little guy. I’ve held very preemie grand babies. I too have some large dog shaped holes in my heart, but I know the love that these animals gave to me and received from me. I love your comment about life having its turning points. That is so true, and they really don’t stop. We continue to learn from each phase of our lives and our interactions with others. Thank you for a beautiful post.February 20, 2016 – 11:58 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Thanks so much Pat, and it really is true that we learn so much from each experience – maybe even from the most difficult ones even more than from our successes. I appreciate you coming by, linking up, and for your kind comment!February 21, 2016 – 2:23 pmReplyCancel

  • Dana - I don’t want many do-overs either. What if they changed where I am now…and I don’t want to change that.

    Before you know it, Tucker will have those abs. My boy’s get more defined as mine get less. Sigh.February 21, 2016 – 1:35 pmReplyCancel

  • Sandra - Oh my gawsh I so miss the 80s and my great curly hair and I thought I was all-that! But I do wish I could go back and pay closer attention to my little babies instead of wishing those long, sleepless nights away. Now that I’m a postpartum nurse and I see the mothers crying after two sleepless nights, I want to tell them, “Trust me, in 12 years you’ll wish you had held this baby and just cherished this moment instead of crying because you have had no sleep in 6 days.” Wimps.February 27, 2016 – 3:19 amReplyCancel

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