I love kids with Autism, I'd better because I have TWO! Sometimes dealing with Autism is just too much and it has to explode somewhere. Where? Here. Welcome to my first ever blog attempt.
Saturday, December 6, 2014
Yelling at the Pieces
week I was given a compliment from a fellow parent, he said that he
admired my patience with my boys. I should have said, “thank you”
but instead I think I mumbled something about my patience being long
fought and hard won. This is true. In the past fellow parents have
not been as kind as I was dealing with tantrums and rages and just
trying to get though the moment. It has taken me YEARS to have the
level of patience I do now but, in no way, shape or form do I have an
extended patience level. In all of thirteen years I have amassed a
level which can last just 45-60 minutes, max. So yes, that compliment
was very nice and has made me feel very good this week. I am just
thankful that my younger son's appointment was only 50 minutes long
while I waited in the lobby with my older son. That I did not reach
my breaking point thus forcing this fellow parent to retract his
praise and consider me to be the lunatic that I am the majority of
to today and I am at odds with my own frustration and anger and I
want to YELL at the thing that has brought me to this point. I
cannot. They say that Autism is like a puzzle and “we'll keep
trying until the pieces fit!” but there are other pieces at play in
this puzzle that make up the small bodies in front of me. One of our
biggest obstacles this year is helping my 10 year old traverse life
with his puzzle pieces of Autism, severe ADHD and Anxiety Disorder.
Its a balancing act of figuring out which puzzle piece is being
played at that moment, taking into consideration the needs of that
piece all the while trying to balance out the other pieces at the
am frustrated with Adam because we attended a Lego event at a busy
store. Unbeknownst to me he brought along a small Lego creation of
his own along with two transformers all shoved into his pockets. As
we were checking out sofas after the event, he started pulling out
these small toys with many pieces and parts. With the new lego
creation from the event, he now had 4 things in all AND a pair of
noise canceling headphones. As soon as I noticed the toys coming out
of the pockets I gathered everyone and we headed out of the door, I
wasn't very kind about it. My frustration was evident.
things along is not new and its not uncommon for kids with Anxiety.
They need something familiar, something comforting. My own anxiety of
leaving things behind and having my son freak out over a lost toy
does not play well with Adam's packrat anxiety reduction technique.
Once everyone was back in the car we headed out to lunch, my son was
happy with his new Lego creation and my frustration level went back
to a manageable level until...
arrive home and I'm unloading the car, its raining and I want to make
sure 2 Lego creations and 2 transformers are stuffed back into
pockets as well as the library book my oldest brought along with him,
my handbag and cell phone and...”where are your headphones?” The
last time I noticed them, they were sitting on a table in the
furniture section of the department store while I was shoving toys
back into the pocket of my youngest's cargo pants. My frustration
level went right back to where it was before and then climbed a few
levels beyond that. I'm saying things like, “WHY did you bring
those toys...” and “YOU KNOW you aren't supposed to...” and
“I'M SO FRUSTRATED with you...” And my son got upset, actually
both of my sons got upset. My youngest because I was frustrated with
him and my oldest because he didn't understand why I was upset and he
was afraid he did something wrong.
I got mad at myself because I wanted to yell so freaking bad!!!! I
wanted to get mad and try and get him to understand everything he did
wrong and to learn this lesson so that **I** wouldn't get frustrated
again. Ummmm... see that there? I, Myself, I, I, I... Wow. Yeah,
that was realization #1.
#2 came a few minutes later after I had shut my mouth. Getting angry
at a piece of the puzzle is not new to me. I have plenty of “I hate
Autism” days, I let myself have that anger and then remember that
no matter what I am feeling, the boys difficulties far far outweigh
my own. Today was the first time I really really needed to be angry
at ADHD, the piece that was forgetful, the piece that left behind the
headphones, the piece that can't think beyond the moment and see how
much they will be needed 15 minutes, 30 minutes or even a day from
now. So I thought, yes, lets be angry at ADHD! So I started in with
the “You know...” and “I'm so frustrated...” but I forgot
about the anxiety piece.
got mad, he got sad, he got frustrated as all these pieces took
center stage in defense of his choices. As I watched this unfold I
realized that I cannot ever get mad at just one piece. They aren't
removable or interchangeable, they are always present and together
they make up a really awesome (sometimes frustrating)10 year old. I
love that whole little person, every piece and part, with my whole
heart. Its unrealistic to think that I won't ever get mad or
frustrated again but I will now and forever remember that getting mad
at just the ADHD makes about as much sense as being mad at the
headphones that were left behind.
all hit the reset button now. The Hubs went back out in the cold rain
for the headphones, we all had some quiet time and peace is once
again reigning in the household. Lets hope it remains for the rest of
the day, the likelihood of which is about as much as the headphones
walking home on their own.