Jan 26, 2018

Essay on An Evening Spent with Special Children

Come weekend and the entire world seems to drown itself into loudest party mode in the name of unwinding.

This, of course, is unthinkable for introverts, which is why going party animal mode has never been my kind weekend celebration. However, this weekend I was surrounded by a roomful of loud, boisterous and frolicking people. The only difference was that it wasn’t any weekend party of grown ups, rather an evening spent with ADHD children.

Essay on An Evening Spent with Special Children

There is often much misinformation regarding special children. Unfortunately, even today, our society often labels all divergent being and behavior under one label – mentally retarded – which cannot be farther from truth. Special children are those who have physical, cognitive or behavioral needs that requires special care.

There are majorly unique four types.
Physical – children with muscular dystrophy, epilepsy, multiple sclerosis, etc.
Sensory Impaired – the visually impaired (partially or fully blind), the deaf or children with limited hearing, the dumb (or speech impaired) etc.
Cognitive or Developmental – children with Learning Disability (LD), Dyslexia, Dysgraphia, Dyscalculia, Autism, Down Syndrome, other processing disorders, etc.
Behavioral/Emotional – ADHD, Oppositional Defiance Disorder, children from Difficult Backgrounds etc.

To understand that each of these type of children are uniquely special and needs empathetic care and support is vital. And to learn, observe and bond with such unique little minds is what drew me out of my usual burrow and into Sneha’s Home for Special Children this weekend.

The twenty three bright and boisterous children I was greeted by children with “ADHD” (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder). These children were not In-House residents. This group of children, instead, were gathered every evening to offer a nonjudgmental, uninhibited space for their loudest, noisiest hyperactivity. I was much impressed not just with the concept but the entire process. ADHD by now is a controversial pathology with professionals debating over the very validity of such a label. Most mental health professionals by now have denounced the practice of medicating hyperactive children down to controllable states. Instead, behavioral therapy and aware, empathetic nurturing are being suggested as holistic approach.

At Sneha’s I was delighted to see, and be a part of, such aware, attentive and nonjudgmental space being offered to children whose minds run faster than unicorns and energy boils bigger than steam engines. To play with them, hear their hyper-imaginative stories and dreams and to shed some of my own repressed energy by rolling on the mat with some, and chasing away the “unrealistic” dragons with some other, indeed felt far more relaxing a way of unwinding from the realism of weekly grind, than turning myself into a forcefully extroverted weekend party animal.

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