Our Mission

Once upon a time, a group of special needs moms started talking about their lives.

They talked about how devoted they are to their children and to making sure that their kids’ needs are met.

But somewhere along the way, they had forgotten to take care of themselves.


To care for others, you have to take care of yourself as well.

Too often, we feel guilty as parents when we take time to do something that is just for us.

But it’s how we can keep giving our best to our children.

Shannon and Alysia started this project for one reason only: to give parents a place to feel supported when they take a moment to catch their breath.


The “Oxygen Mask Project” has two parts.  One piece is this blog.  We will feature stories from parents about what they are doing for themselves.  These stories are the foundation for our project – the place where people can sit and reflect and gather ideas for making changes in their daily lives.

The second part is our Facebook page.  Join us there and post what you are doing that day for you.  We will cheer you on.  Others will too.  We want to know things like “went for a walk alone” or “went to the gym for the first time today” or “started back at college”.

We’ll be cheering people on via Twitter too, so join us there as well.

This project is about us.  Making little changes in our lives and supporting each other along the way.

Strength in numbers.

Breathe. Calm. Carry on.


20 responses to “Our Mission

  1. Pingback: 12 things i learned on my weekend away « a diary of a mom

  2. Oh, this is wonderful just wonderful!!! Thank you Shannon and Alysia for starting this most glorious and wonderful project….I true gift you give to us all!!!

  3. AndyMummy

    I LOVE this site. Love love love love love. Love. The “weight watchers” support group for those trying to lose a different kind of weight; the heaviness that drags down our spirit when we forget to recharge and reconnect with ourselves.

    Thank you!

    I joined a gym 3 weeks ago. I have been twice. I consider that gigantic progress for me with the preschoolers on the spectrum. Gigantic!

  4. LOVE this mission; I’m going to make it my mission too!

  5. Pingback: Get Up « Try Defying Gravity

  6. dawn

    this is just wondeful!!!

  7. Wow, it’s so easy to forget that we matter too. My sister told me about this site and I am forever grateful. To her and to you! Thanks a million.

  8. Pingback: Finding a little bit of happy…. | Wonderfully Wired

  9. What a great idea! I wish you luck with it.

  10. Pingback: The adult time | Holistic me

  11. Jennifer Schwenker

    I have FINALLY put on my oxygen mask! Joined Weight Watchers on Feb 23rd, dropping lbs, BP and LDL, and walked Kennesaw Mtn with service dog from bottom to top on the TRAIL, not the road…….for the first time of MANY! Then found this blog! Thanks for writing it. It will keep helping me to check my oxygen mask to make sure it has not gotten knocked off!

  12. Thanks for this. You’re helping so many.

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  15. I love this blog! Thank you for starting it, and having so many parents talk about how they are putting on the oxygen mask first. It helps to keep the rest of us from feeling guilty for doing so. But, in reality, we ARE helping our kids by caring for ourselves. Thanks again!

  16. Pingback: a birthday present to myself | that cynking feeling

  17. What a great site!

    I am the father of three children, one of whom has Down Syndrome. My wife just forwarded me a link to this site because she thought it shared a similar mission to the blog I just created to focus on health and wellness, particularly from the perspective of a special needs parent. I welcome everyone to check it out at http://www.bestbuiltlife.com, and perhaps we can build some synergy around this important, but often overlooked, cause.

    In the meantime, I can’t wait to keep an eye out for more great content here!

  18. I just found you and I am SO HAPPY! I use the oxygen mask analogy a lot with my coaching clients and it’s not until they get THAT that they understand how absolutely crucial it is for us moms to be whole and intact and, dare I say it, HAPPY (at least some of the time!). I am blessed in that my Aspie son (15) has only moderate issues but even so, I still have my days of thinking that banging my head against the wall has to be better than .

    I look forward to hearing more voices calling out encouraging one another to love themselves and mean it!

  19. I love the oxygen mask analogy. Moms definitely need to hear that it is okay to take care of themselves!

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