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Simply Special

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Seven years ago, our family welcomed our special-needs son, Chaim Boruch, into our lives. I remember the tubes, wires, monitors, all connected to my baby. I remember the team of doctors, the surgeons, the medications, and the tense atmosphere in the Intensive Care Unit at UCSF. I remember looking at my child with the heart-wrenching tightness that filled my every cell. I remember the oxygen flowing to my child. I remember the oxygen I learned to breathe on that 14th floor of my nightmarish days.

I actually thought I knew how to breathe up until that point in my life. But I didn’t. I also thought I knew what “faith” and “trust” meant. But I didn’t.

Until that special day.

I say “special” now, and didn’t know it then. I, too, went through all the “healthy” phases of such a challenging moment. Anger. Self-pity. Denial. Frustration. Wonder. Yet, after time, tears and deep reflection, I can now call that day “special.”

I’m not the same woman, wife and mother that I was. And even my heart beats differently, a rhythm that I didn’t know existed. I have learned the beauty of being open, of letting go, of loving what is different, of acceptance, of forgiveness—both of myself and others. I am learning about myself, my essence, my soul. I am on a journey, embracing a life of simplicities that only we can perceive. Dancing to a melody only we can create. Just Chaim Boruch and I.

And for this alone, I will always be grateful.

So, dear friends, I welcome you to join me on my journey. A journey that vacillates between the rock-bottom moments and the sky-high, euphoric milestones.

Of everything different. Of everything the same.

Of everything simple. Of all things special.

Welcome to Simply Special, a blog about a mother’s endless love for her special-needs son.


Chana is a proud wife and mother living in Mill Valley, California. She is inspired by the colors and textures of everyday life, and loves sharing her creative ideas with her community. Chana writes DIY projects, crafts and recipes celebrating her Jewish life and shlichus on her blog Chana’s Art Room, and is the co-director of Chabad of Mill Valley with her husband, Rabbi Hillel Scop. To read more about Chaim Boruch, and Chana’s journey, take a look at her personal special-needs blog, Life of Blessing.
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Chana Scop March 26, 2014

Dear Anonymous Thank you for your comment, I too look forward to sharing more of what is deep within.
Wishing you all the best,
Chana Reply

CHana Scop March 26, 2014

Dear Angela,
Thank you for sharing! It is so special to connect with each other, as the journey is filled with a myriad of emotions and moments.
I look forward to being in touch and sharing in our journey together!
All the best,
Chana Reply

Angela W March 26, 2014

Loved your article and it so resonated. My lovely beautiful daughter is special too, on the autistic spectrum and it's been a roller coaster of up and down moments and experiences for both of us. I wouldn't change it for the world. She's my teacher and has helped me enormously with learning patience and unconditional love. I grieved for the child she could have been many years ago.... but now give thanks to G-d everyday for allowing me to be the mother of a beautiful daughter. She's my little unique star! Reply

Anonymous March 25, 2014

SWEET!!!! Reply

Anonymous March 25, 2014

Thank you for writing this, you touched my heart (and yes I cried too). Beautiful... You put into words what I couldn't several years ago. Thank you so so much. Looking forward to reading more. Reply

Chana Scop Mill Valley March 21, 2014

Thank you Bassie.
all the best,
Chana Reply

Bassie Goldman March 21, 2014

Beautifully written, you brought tears to my eyes . I wish you much hatzlacha in your continued journey and in your ability to continue to inspire others! Reply

Chana Scop Mill Valley March 20, 2014

Thank you! Thank you Fred.
As a community, our hearts are all so very much connected.
May we always share in healthy, happy occasions, with strength and vitality, seizing every opportunity to bring Heaven down to Earth.
sincerely,
Chana Reply

chana scop Mill valley March 20, 2014

beautiful Thanks Michelle!
I'm looking forward to posting more from the heart!
all the best,
Chana Reply

Michelle San Francisco March 19, 2014

beautiful Hello Mrs. Scop,

It's so nice to read such beautiful, inspiring words from a fellow Bay Area resident! I look forward to your future articles. Reply

Fred Fox Tiburon,Ca. 94920 March 19, 2014

To My Rebbetzin Your story is heartbreaking but it didn’t break yours. We are grateful for that, for without that we wouldn’t have you.

“The way in which a man accepts his fate and all the suffering it entails, the way in which he takes up his cross, gives him ample opportunity—even under the most difficult circumstances—to add a deeper meaning to his life.”
Dr. Viktor Frankl from “Man’s Search For Meaning Reply

Chana Scop March 17, 2014

Thank you Marlene for your kind words. I am sorry to hear about your loss.
May we always share in healthy, happy occasions and may your journey too be filled with comfort and peace.
all the best,
Chana Reply

Marlene Lewis Montreal, Quebec. March 17, 2014

Dear Chana,
I love your words. Though I am not the mother of a special needs child, I lost my son Ilan to cystic fibrosis, 13 yrs. ago. I find your words a wonderful inspiration. May your "journey" take you and your family to many beautiful places along the way. Reply

Chana Scop Mill Valley, CA March 4, 2014

Reply to DAD! Dear Menachem,
Great Question!
Without a shadow of a doubt, the deep love and care my husband has for our son, surpasses whatever one could only imagine.
It is essential that when raising a special child, as well as 'typical' children, both parents are equally involved, deeply connected partners in this most formidable role.
Yet, each person in the world, dances to their own rhythm, as there are no two dancers ever dancing exactly the same.
Being that I have been given the opportunity to be the author of this blog, I will be writing as a mother, from my perspective, from my heart, with my own rhythm.
It would be unfair of me to write from my husband's heart, for his, beats to his own rhythm that only he could describe.
Both my husband and I are very open about our 'special' journey, as a couple and as individuals and we welcome further questions and discussion in the appropriate forum.
So feel free to contact either of us via email at www.lifeofblessing.com.
All the best, Chana Reply

Menachem March 3, 2014

Dad! I wonder why only your son and you dance to this rhythm. Where is Dad in the picture? Does he care for and love his son as you do? I look forward to learning... Reply

Chana Scop shares her experiences parenting a child with special needs.
Chana ScopChana is a proud wife and mother living in Mill Valley, California. She is inspired by the colors and textures of everyday life, and loves sharing her creative ideas with her community. Chana writes DIY projects, crafts and recipes celebrating her Jewish life and shlichus on her blog Chana’s Art Room, and is the co-director of Chabad of Mill Valley with her husband, Rabbi Hillel Scop. She also writes about a mother’s journey of raising a special-needs son on her other blog, Life of Blessing. She welcomes you to be a part of her creative and touching journey.