As Promised

I promised that I would write more about this experience, so while my boys giggle over Star Wars Padawan Menace, I shall attempt some thoughts.  The Menace is pretty funny actually, I am not the least perturbed by the hi-jacking of my tv.  Who am I kidding, I have not had viewing rights for the last 5 years, why should 2012 be different?

Yesterday I talked about how I grew up mentally the night my son was admitted.  Each day I visited him and called at least 3 times a day to see how he was doing.  There were moments when I said prayers for him that he cried on the other end of the phone.  My heart broke in those moments.  A couple of times he called me in tears because the evening movie was Old Yeller and he did not want the dog hurt.  Mind you, I have never seen the movie and based on his reaction I don’t think I ever will.

The fact is, my son was and is a tender-hearted soul that sees and perceives things on a level that most people do not.  I thought it was a character flaw, but in watching him I consider it a gift.  He watches programs on the History channel about saving the whale and dolphins and sobs because he is too young to solve the problem.  He loves animals, but would never be a veterinarian because that would mean that he has to put an animal down sometimes.  He can’t stand the idea of anyone or anything in pain.  I champion that in him.

The question is how to best help him navigate in a world that is desensitized and instantly gratified.  What he feels and understands is not surface, it goes to the core of who he is.  Truth is, he is just like his mama in that respect, so to have him in this situation was doubly difficult.  I wish I could think of some way to toughen him up, allow less to seep in, but I cannot.  I know why he tears up at the end of the Prince of Egypt.  I do too, for other reasons.  He is adept at music, art, and has the vocabulary few second graders ever hear.  He is good-looking, athletically built and talented, creative, kind, and compassionate.

Additionally he wakes in the morning bouncing off the walls, screaming to anyone that will listen; half the time I have no idea what story he has invented it comes out so fast.  He stops long enough to choke down some breakfast and is off running around the house again.  If we are lucky, nothing has set him off and we can get out the door to school without incident.  Many times there is a hold-up and one of the 2 is throwing a tantrum.  You see, the youngest has learned behaviors copied from the oldest.  Makes the household interesting to say the least.  Right now I have Alvin and the Chipmunks on and my youngest offered his brother a cheese stick.  His response?  To cower in the corner screaming that they are poison and we are trying to kill him.  Really?  Really.  I thought I was over dramatic growing up, this kid has nothing on me.

When I hear people laughing that the mother’s curse is alive and well, I cringe.  I know what it is like to have a son so sensitive that it is tough to talk with him, one never knows what will set him off to temper tantrums.

Honestly, it makes me feel like a horrid mother.  I sit in fear almost daily wondering how his day in school is going, does he have friends, is he happy?  Does he feel good about himself and his place in the world?  My hope is yes, but I cannot guarantee that for him.  Just a moment ago I cleaned up orange pop from the arm rest of my chair, because both of them decided it was a good idea to wrestle each other from it.  Also mixed in is blue-green powder from a dip n stick thing that my oldest dumped on the chair and proceeded to lick it off like a dog.  Is this the hallmark of bad parenting, are these behaviors normal or the result of my incapability to parent them?  I watch as they grab a snack from the kitchen and then leave wrappers wherever they sit or they simply throw them on the floor…..lack of respect, yup.  Tired of it I am.  The second I confront the behavior the oldest smacks himself in the face and stares at me to see if I am watching….the youngest is learning the same trick.  How much is situation and how much is without control?  Who knows.

It makes for one tired mom and a pretty stressed household.  I spoke earlier about the effect on others when an illness is present.  This is one of those hallmark moments.  The consummate feeling of failure or that I am getting what I deserve from the way I acted as a child.  My family would chime up  that I was incorrigible and my school voted me most dramatic–as a joke not in fun.  There are times when I think, why should I not get payback in reams?  I was not a treat for my parents to raise and my brothers would tell you that I was a pain to have in the house….(true that is the case for any brother talking about their sister.)  There are times when I feel so much out of my control that I simply want to sit and bawl and I cannot.  Everyone will tell me, it is what it is….buck up and deal with it.  I shall and I will, some days it  sucks and there is no easy way to say it.  Alas, it is what it is.  I must go, my 2 are wrestling in the middle of the floor and if I do not stop someone will end up in the ER.




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