Don't let fear of tech stand in the way of making a plan for your child with special needs
Earlier this year, a friend of mine and I got together to work on a presentation we were doing for a group of parents of kids with autism. "You want to do slides?" I asked. Her eyes grew wide. "Sure." she said. "OK, cool." I said. We looked at each other over our coffee mugs.
"I am not really sure how to do them." I said meekly, as I poked a button on my laptop. She broke into laughter. "Well - me neither!" she exclaimed. And in our shared wonder of how to create a PowerPoint, we clinked our mugs and figured it out.
Once we got going on it, making slides wasn't difficult. It was just the "getting started" we both felt funny about. And as we worked, venturing into more creative ideas, we somehow discovered how to take an image from our laptops and use it in the slide. Small stuff for those who are tech savvy! But when technological skills don't come easy, jumping into the technology pool for a swim around the place can be scary.
I've had my share of tech issues, and no doubt: it is very frustrating! When there's something you want to do, or something you need to find, and you simply cannot figure out how to make it work, you just want to scream!
My favorite is when I know I have a certain document saved on my laptop, and, for the life of me, I cannot find it anywhere. Those are the times I have to close my laptop, walk away, do some deep breathing, and come back to it later. It just drives me crazy.
Tech problems plague all of us, even the most savvy ones out there. When we consider ourselves to be lacking in tech proficiency, we end up limiting ourselves and even selling ourselves short. It IS a technology-based world now, and if we don't muster the courage to board that tech train, it will leave the station without us. We will be left standing on the platform clinging to our memo pads and Sharpee pens and file folders while the planks beneath our feet start to crumble.
I like my paper and pens. I admit it. I like my 8 x 11 inch planner with pages for each month. If I don't write it, I don't remember it. That's just the way I am. Some friends poke fun at me, reminding me that my phone calendar will send me reminders whereas my planner won't. True. I do make use of my Calendar app; I've come a long way in terms of using technology in my everyday life. I've even set up my own Zoom meetings. But I am surely one of those holders-on who is standing on the platform hugging my composition notebook.
When I heard about a tool for using technology to organize all-things-special-needs, I dismissed it (at first). Why would I need technology for that? I had my nice, white binders with everything labeled and tagged and highlighted. And if it meant that I had to transfer all of that to a digital dashboard...umm, no thanks. No time and not enough tech skills to do so.
The more I looked into it though, the more my curiosity peaked. Easy? Less stress? Everything in one place? Sounded too good to be true. My organizational side was itching to find out more. So I investigated. And what I found was just perfect.
What's more - I had an awakening when I realized that if I wasn't around, and someone else needed to keep care going for my son, that person or people would simply not find what they needed in a set of binders large enough to rival the old Encyclopedia Brittanica set.
Enter Vest. Vest is just perfect. An online tool to help me navigate life with special needs in the family. There is simply nothing else like this out there. And just as my worry started rising, thinking I needed grand technology skills to use this app, my anxiety was quickly banished. Vest was pre-organized to make things simple. Vest is incredibly easy to use. Once I got going, I realized there was nothing to be apprehensive about. Easier than PowerPoint.
It was like Vest understood me as a special needs parent. It took my concerns and the overwhelming amount of stuff I deal with as a special needs parent to heart and gave me something useful, something beneficial to my family, and something safe. It reduced my worry. And most importantly, it addressed the one powerful and crippling thought all parents of special needs kids have: what will become of my child when I can no longer take care of him?
Vest gives parents the perfect way to take all the information we have about our precious child and secure it for the future care of that child. Everything I know about my child with special needs...everything I do for my child with special needs...I can have everything organized in one place and accessible anytime, anywhere, by anyone I choose.
You don't have to be tech savvy to use Vest. Take my word for it. You don't need training or long tutorials or a manual. Just log in to Vest on any of your devices and go.
Now, finding that evasive document on your laptop is tricky, but - if you have a document (entry) you upload to your Vest, never again will you need to be searching around for it. Your child's medication list? There, at a click of a button. Your child's current IEP services list? There. Instantly. The recipe for your son's favorite gluten free brownies? Yup, there. However you need Vest to function for you, it will.