“Karma” is a concept based on Indian religions which is an action or deed understood as that which causes the entire cycle of cause and effect. (from Wikepedia) In other words, it is payback for all the wrong that one person has done in this life or from a past life.
“Bad luck” is a belief in the bad fortune in life being caused by accident or chance, which happens beyond a person's control. (From Wikipedia)
Have these two words been in your vocabulary ever since you found out that your child has special needs? I have considered these terms on those many nights that I tried to answer the question “Why”.
Did it satisfactorily answer my question… NO.
You see, if I view having a special needs child as karma, then that would not really mingle well with the idea that I am being punished for my bad deeds with the life of a child… because that means that “life of a child” may equal a form of punishment. I mean, why would my child pay for my bad deeds that have passed, and even the ones that I’ve committed in my past life? It just does not seem fair that my child’s soul was chosen for me to payback the universe for the wrong I’ve done. What has my child done?
Now, let me look into the concept of bad luck. Since luck in itself happens by chance and my child’s syndrome happened by chance as well, then I guess it would be safe to say that “This is just my luck” Now, add an adjective before the word luck, then I can either view it as “good luck” or “bad luck”. Now if I keep on thinking about it as the latter type of luck, what good would it do me? Would that also mean that instead of viewing my child as a lucky charm, I will be viewing her as an “unlucky charm”? Come on, how many times have lucky charms really worked for you? Do you get what I’m saying? What about other occurrences that if you really think about it was a result of neglect to attend to circumstances that could have been prevented? Would you call that bad luck too?
Now, if these words keep on marinating inside my mind as the reason behind why I was given a child with special needs then I will just be forever trapped into the loop of punishing myself and feeling guilty that I had to pay the universe back for my bad deeds through the life of my child, and that carrying my child around will result in nothing but a series of unfortunate events… or that there will be nothing good ever that can come out from the point that she was diagnosed and onwards and there is nothing that I can do to undo it because it is beyond my control. My fate has been decided for me.
Now, to delve further, what about children with special needs that were diagnosed later (those ones that weren’t diagnosed until they entered school), does that mean that prior to finding out about the diagnosis you had “goodluck”? Now, what about those parents that are true Christians and believers, what is their karma? Why are they “paying” when they seem to be really really good people? What about the murderers? If the concept of karma was accurate then “all” murderers would have special children? I mean, a life for “a life” right?
It just does not really make sense to keep thinking about my circumstances that way.
And of course there are other words that we can attribute to this “chance occurrence that we can never really be sure of if it happened because we were paying for our bad deeds”… words such as “gift”, and “blessing”.
At the beginning, we hear these words often as a form of encouragement… and although it may not really make sense initially, would you rather really entertain the thought that you were given a special needs child because you've been cursed?
Why negate your “gift” or “blessing” with thoughts such as “karma” or “bad luck”? Instead, think of the words “challenge” or “test” then take on that challenge and move beyond being paralyzed by your views that what you are experiencing is a tragedy. Because though this happened by chance, by circumstances beyond your control, you have a choice to control your perception.And it is only through facing this challenge that you can one day reap the "blessings" of your "gift".
Our children are termed “special” for a reason. (redefine it and you’d swallow and digest it easier)
It’s all a matter of perspective, really.
And of faith… lots and lots of faith.