learning to live and love from a new perspective

Day Off

His teachers and therapists call it self-advocating.

They call it great progress in being able to voice what he likes and what he wants.

They are so pleased with his ability to articulate his preferences.

To them I say, want to trade places for the weekend?

Mom, you are ruining my plan!!

But I wanted to take THE WHOLE DAY OFF!!

You are a mean, mean mommy!

You are making me SO MAD!!!

Why are you making me do this?

 

I know, I know… it is big, monumental progress for G to be able to use words to say what he wants. It is a giant step forward from the wordless tantrums we experienced in preschool. It is awesome to have a kid who is able to express his feelings. But why do those feelings so often encompass anger towards me?

Given his way, G would choose to stay at home in his PJs from dismissal on Friday afternoon straight through until start of school on Monday. The things that he enjoys the most (Minecraft, electric circuits, his Harry Potter book) are right here at home. The people he enjoys socializing with the most (mom, dad, and S) are right here at home, too.

Sometimes, I feel the same way. I enjoy a good day of hibernation every once in a while. But for me, the enjoyment of a quiet day at home wears off by late afternoon, and I’m ready to do something or see people. Too many hours at home makes me feel sad and isolated. Life is out there happening, and I’m trapped in here, on the whim of my perspective-taking-challenged warden.

It’s been like this for a while… but I’ve been feeling it more acutely lately. Scheduling activities has never been my favorite activity, but lately it’s felt like an oppressive task. For every invitation I receive, or consider extending, I feel the tension creeping up my neck. Wouldn’t it be fun to go to X’s house for dinner with a group of other families? The weather is supposed to be great on Sunday. Ice skating with friends sounds lovely. One of G’s friends is having a birthday party on Saturday afternoon. Sounds like a fun time, plus a great chance to socialize with some parents from his class. And yet, as I consider each possible plan, I feel my chest constrict. Yes, it sounds like fun. Yes, I can get G to agree in the abstract. But I can envision the struggle that’s going to take place when it’s time to hustle out the door.

Mom, you are ruining my plan!!

But I wanted to take THE WHOLE DAY OFF!!

You are a mean, mean mommy!

You are making me SO MAD!!!

Why are you making me do this?

And I have to decide… will I have the fortitude, once the battle is over, and I’ve forced him into the car? Will I be able to wipe away my tears and bury my frustration? Will I be able to force a smile and join in the socializing? Or, do I skip the fight entirely, decline the invite, and stay at home?

Is anyone else dealing with this?

IMG_0705

This is G at home, doing science experiments in hi sPJs.

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Comments on: "Day Off" (4)

  1. Wow- that post really brings this dilemma to life. I wish I knew how to handle this better. I feel like he will grow and get past this place, but it’s extremely hard right now, mostly for you.

    • We’re getting there. As you’ve wisely told me… it’s a phase. Not a fun phase, but one that we will get through eventually.

  2. I love reading your posts and have shared them with other parents dealing with similar issues. I think both you and David are doing a great job. Parenting is not easy, parenting kids with special needs is especially not easy, yet we all push on. I work with young adults with similar profiles as Gs so I get to see all the hard work from parents pay off because I get to work with the successful young adults. 😃

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