Tag Archives: Family

The Nag or the Friend?

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Since becoming the Home School Mom (of the Year…not) of my Aspie’s life, we’ve had a few ups and downs. I’ve been the teacher extraordinaire, the grumpy teacher, the balanced teacher…the good mom, the evil twin sister mom, the huggy mom…it’s been a mixture of good and the not-so-excellent. Overall, I think we’ve made some progress. I can’t always be the Mom they remember. Teacher Mom gets in there and makes them work. Other times, Fibro Mom lays in bed for a day and tells them to do a few things here and there. I mark their stuff in bed and life goes on.

Lately, I am thinking because of the general state of pubescence, I seem more of a nag to him than usual. Or he’s losing some brain cells to the hormonal surges and I need to remind him more often. All he says he hears me say are things he has to do. He says he cringes when he hears his name because it will never be something fun or positive.

It hurts my heart a little that he perceives our lives like that. Me the Drill sergeant, never the soft mom who listens to his problems/happy talk all the time. He sees me as definitely someone who sucks joy out of his life. I call him back to what he is supposed to do in his life and school and little else. I have to say, I feel the same. I feel we’ve lost a bit of our rapport. It used to be great. I think it’s NORMAL for an almost-teen boy and his mom to not be as close but I still want to have a good relationship with him. How do I change this? How do I make it less him against me?

I should probably read a few books about it. There is probably some very good books on the topic.

A few ideas I’ve prayed about are:

*Taking more time to play with him. I need to play those Wii games I dislike. We always have fun doing it.

*I need to listen more. It’s been easy to gloss over what he’s saying and not really listen. We’ve had great conversations in the past but the kid can talk and there are only so many mine craft convos until I start staring into space. I need to be more aware of what he wants to talk about.

* We need to get out more. Or maybe he needs to. He needs more stimulation than ever. He likes to move, play ball, be with friends. It’s a normal part of his development when friends become important and parents aren’t. I get it. Just who do you trust with your son. We’ve had some interesting things happen to us in this community with “friends” so we are wanting to let him spread his wings, however we still need to be watchful and vigilant in whom he hangs with. I am praying about this one so very much. I want my child to have some really good friends and ones he and we can trust. It’s complicated when he’s an Aspie. He has the ability to make friends (yay) but not the ability to make good judgments when his friends are asking to do something he knows is wrong. Anyways…it’s a tough one.

* We do our best to give as many opportunities as we can to cater to our children’s interests and to keep them just busy enough but not too busy for family. When we home school two and public school two the dynamics of what that means gets complicated. We need him to have more positive interactions. This year he has found basketball difficult but has worked through it tremendously. Still, he thinks he has to do basketball because he has to and I’m praying he can start enjoying it. There are many people on his team with which he could enjoy it with.

* He wants to figure out what his passions are, what his purpose is so that he can plan for the future…what do I want to do with the rest of my life? I pray we can help him see what he is good at because there are so many things.

My sweet, kind, goofy, spirited boy…how I do love him. I pray that we can find a balance in it all as he grows . He was born for a purpose and I know he will find it.

Stepping into the next stage

Klein Lake, Near Panther River, West of Sundre
Klein Lake, Near Panther River, West of Sundre (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Life passes by much too quickly these days, and my wish to slow the pace, increases.

One family misses a child tonight and they won’t get to hold her again. My friend’s niece passed away from an accident and their family will never again see the beautiful smiles that radiated from her. They will have a hole in their lives and family unit that she had once filled.

My heart has been reminded of my own loss, as I remember my own brother’s passing from an accidental drowning and how that placed a space in our family…and empty place. Our family forever changed by a moment.

I miss a child tonight. It feels like there is a hole in our little brood tonight. The likelihood of his return is likely and yet the terror that tries to infiltrate my heart is hard to fend off as I have these thoughts of loss so very present in my heart.

I came home and there was evidence of him on every corner. His collection of holes under the trampoline indicate the love for his salamander, who is given fresh earth worms every morning. His dirty sheets are reminders that I really need to teach him some responsibility. His lonely sister is indicative of what kind of older brother he is.

I cried. I am not afraid to admit, a piece of fear that I may never hug him again always tugs at my heart when I have to let him go, bit by bit. From my experience of loss comes the temptation to fear when I have to let him try and do things on his own. Not because he has always wanted to, but because I knew in the end it was good for him.

When I let him go to preschool at 3 yrs. old for 3 days a week, friends thought I should probably have kept him home closer to me and not send him away too soon. That preschool was the beginning of a very good thing. They helped him immeasurably…and me as well. But I cried. For weeks, as I dropped him off in the mornings, I secretly cried. I wanted to take him home. Protect him from whatever was happening. Make him feel safe.

When he started Kindergarten in a new school, I cried. I knew he would be confused because it wasn’t the same place that he had gone to school and there were all so many new things. Good people surrounded him and made sure that even if there were moments that were scary, he was safe.

I have been the person he goes to for information on what the world is saying to him. I am his interpreter for many situations. I can guess what he’s thinking, and reassure him. I can tell him what certain events or social situations mean and calm him down. I can talk him down from the proverbial emotional ledge. I can remind him to do things that he forgets to do.

There were a few nail biting moments this week. Our J-man was SO looking forward to camp and we had not received a letter confirming his registration nor gotten a call. I left messages and emails hoping to know whether or not to send him. By today, we just decided to pack up and go for it. He was as ready as ready does. We went to the camp, and sure enough they had not registered him. He was on the waiting list. Since he was there…they found the ONE extra bed they had open in a boys cabin. Answer to prayer, OH MY!! Thanks be to Jesus, who knew my son’s heart was ready for this. I asked J-man what he would do if they couldn’t find a spot for him. “I’d DIE.” Well, that won’t happen because you got in!!!  Yay!  Scary moments though.

This week I will miss my boy so much. He is my buddy, my pal. My incessant source of conversation. But I know this is the right thing for us to do. He is growing up and this is such a big step in his development. He may not clean his glasses for a week. That’s ok. HE may not change his clothes for a week and maybe never shower or put deodorant on. He may make farting or meowing noises and I pray that kids don’t laugh at him.

I hope he finds community there. I pray he is accepted for who he is and loved and taken in. I pray that God will be there in his times of anxiety, of which there will be many moments, I’m sure. I pray that he will meet God there and that his heart will be taken by the wonder of the Creator. May he be encouraged and strengthened in his faith as he branches out in this bold step of development.

What others see as a regular thing in childhood (going to camp), I look at with wonder. Has he come this far already and is he ready for this? Be still, my mother heart.

We were sitting on the lawn of the camp and I asked him if he was ready for me to go. He said “Not yet.” meaning that he still needed me but sometime very soon he would not need me. Within minutes his counsellor called his name to play basketball…I was on my way.  We were both not totally ready but there was the moment.

“I love you, son.”

“I love you too, mom.”

And we both stepped into a new stage in our lives.