Waxing philosophical

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by TerryJ2, Nov 9, 2008.

  1. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    I've had a rough spot with-difficult child (it's a weekend, so I don't know what I expected ;)) and as I read through the notes here, and watch my difficult child at school and at home, it occurs to me that despite all of the problems, he has come a long way.

    Today I spent 3 hrs cleaning the house and I was ticked. easy child hasn't done a thing for 2 wks. Okay, she folded one load of wash and brushed one of the dogs for 2 min. husband thinks that emptying the dishwasher and throwing in a load is all he has to do because he works. (And I don't? And then I'm supposed to change out all the holiday decorations, clean the toilets, chauffer difficult child to and from school, cook dinner, buy all his clothes, pay the bills, run to the P.O. and bank--oh, never mind.)

    difficult child today vacuumed the whole house. He didn't use the attachment (I'll save that for easy child this wk) but he flat-vacuumed nearly every rm.

    I searched his rm for Halloween candy while he was at Sunday School with-husband. I found MORE panties in his closet (WHEN will this ever end???? Yes, we had another talk and he said they were old, which they were, but husband and I stripped his rm when he was in the psychiatric hospital so he's still taking easy child's stuff) and I found MORE urine soaked clothes on top of them. I sprayed the heck out of his rm. Normally, that's his job but I thought I'd give him the day off. I knew he'd wet the bed because he went to a birthday party yesterday and he had pizza (wheat and cheese) and cake (wheat and cream icing). He has no self control so I fed him beforehand and thought that would help ... but he's hitting a growth spurt and would eat the table in front of him if it didn't chip his teeth.

    on the other hand, he swallows his pills now. No complaints. No gagging. He even reminds us of the time.
    I never, ever, ever thought I would see the day. But if there was one thing we got out of his visit to the psychiatric hospital in Sept, it was that a nurse taught him to swallow pills. OMG. It is such a relief.

    Yesterday I bought him new shoes. (That growth spurt again.) As he sat on the floor and tied them, I thought back to all the major tantrums he had while he was learning to tie his shoes. I have never known a kid to get so frustrated and angry and animalistic over a simple job of tying shoes. It got to the point where I bought him velcro shoes and I just decided to deal with-coaches and teachers berating me. Scr*w you, I thought. He'll learn when he's 18.
    In fact, he learned when he was 7. A neighbor boy came over and helped him and the lightbulb went off.

    Another milestone was learning to pull turtlenecks and hoodies over his head with-o freaking out. OMG. He would get so upset. I'm not sure when he was finally able to do it on his own ... probably when he was about 7, and we played a game where I put a turtleneck over my head and kept it over my eyes, as though I were headless, and let the sleeves dangle over my hands, flopping all over, smacking into walls, and he thought it was so silly, he tried it himself. Of course it was such a fun, new game that he had to wear a turtleneck every, single day, even in the heat of the summer, and we'd be late for school while he played his game, but I learned to get up earlier.

    He takes showers now. He hit puberty at 9-1/2 and you could smell him from Wasilla to Tampa. He'd joke about it and say, "That's why it's called Pee--UU-berty!" but he still refused to take a daily shower. In desperation, I emailed the principal and had her talk to him.
    He was embarrassed and angry but it worked for a while. Then I started bribing him. "Can I watch XYZ show?" "Sure, after you take a shower."
    Then, he met a girl at camp. BINGO!!! Shower time!

    He used to rage several times a day, every day. Sometimes all day. Then it slowed down to about an hr twice a day, then once a day, then every three days. Now it's about once every 2 wks, or longer, as long as there's not a holiday, a sleepover or some other schedule disruption.

    We play board games now. He loves Monopoly, StarWarsopoly, Catopoly, and lots of card games. We've played a lot in the past yr, and I have to stop myself if I start to feel melancholy when I see 4-yr-olds at school playing so nicely at tables or on the floor and I think of all the times we missed doing that because difficult child could only rip the boxes to shreds and whale the pieces across the room.

    He's a little boy in a young man's body. I have to remember that.
    And he's making progress. He has not been a happy, delightful, fun child to raise, but he does have his moments. He's got a lot of personality and can be loving and cuddly and funny. And if he weren't so darn cute, I would have killed him by now. ;)

    Anyway, thank you all for being here with-me thoughout all of this ... and for helping me remember that he and all of our g'sfg have come a long way.
  2. Wiped Out

    Wiped Out Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Isn't it great to see the progress? Funny you just posted this, I was thinking along similar lines with my own difficult child. I'm glad you are seeing and appreciating the progress!
  3. SRL

    SRL Active Member

    I gave up on most shirts except t-s and zipper sweatshirts.

    These work great for shoe ties!
  4. Andy

    Andy Active Member

    I can always hear the pride you have for your difficult child. Even through his most trying moments, you see his potential. He is a special young man and you work very hard to keep that part of him shining.

    My Sunday school class meets in the day school's kindergarten room. As I was cleaning up today, one of our little girls came in the room and said, "Everyone but L and E in Kindergarten know how to tie their shoes." I wondered what brought that up until I realized which room we were in and that kids get some recognition on a chart when they learn this skill. She continued, "I bet L and E feel left out. I know I did when I couldn't tie my shoes." I hate tied shoes because the shoe strings are about 10 times the length needed so even if shoes are tied, many of the shoe strings are still hanging. When I grow up, I am going to invent shoe strings that are just the right length for those who insist on the necessisity of tying shoes but also I will invent cool looking velcor closing shoes for all sizes.

    Your difficult child has improved due to your love and belief in him. Congratulations on all your hard work paying off.
  5. Jena

    Jena New Member


    I"m so glad through your challenging weekend that you were able to reflect on the past behaviors the obvious improvements and feel like you are headed somewhere very positive!!

    I think that's great. You can thank everyone all you want. Yet it's you who put it all into play and implemented things and stayed patient. Good for you Mom!!!
  6. ML

    ML Guest

    You're doing a great job and your son is doing the best he can. Manster has that peebuerty smell too. Especially if he doesn't wear socks with his shoes!

    We all have our battles, our unique challenges that make this experience so bittersweet.


  7. Star*

    Star* call 911........call 911


    The eat the table comment was classic. LOVE IT!

    And as far as animalistic in tying shoes? THIS WAS DUDE all over....they grow out of it, but man oh man in the mean time? You think to yourself 'Will this child ever have a pair of shoes NO velcro?'

    School and peer pressure take care of that. or did for us.....

    Sounds like he should get an attaboy for the vacuuming!

    When I asked Dude to flat vacuum? I got my Chippendale furniture marred beyond repair. UGH......
  8. Calgon_Take_Me_Away

    Calgon_Take_Me_Away New Member

    And one day, I hope we can all look back at how challenging times were and chuckle at the comments, behaviors and say, "Where did the time go? It flew by so fast."
  9. Steely

    Steely Active Member

    Terry, your post makes me feel warm and happy. Your love, belief, and hope in him as a person shines through. Thank you for posting this. Even if it is only a glimmer for the day...........those glimmers keep us hanging on through the dark times.

  10. crazymama30

    crazymama30 Active Member

    Terry, my difficult child still has a hard time with shoe laces. He knots them fairly loosely, slips in and out of his shoes, and tucks in the extra laces to the side of his shoes. Some things are not worth the battle, and shoe laces to us, are so not worth it.

    I agree, it is nice to see the progress. My difficult child has not been in a physical fight in over a year (warding off board curse). He now just asks people what the F are they doing? lol. What can I do other than laugh? At least he did not choke the kid down.

    There are new and different challenges every week, but when we move on to new challenges maybe the old ones are better.
  11. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    LOL! Yes, it's hard to say which challenges are worse. Just when I thought difficult child's screaming at the top of his lungs in a restaurant was bad (to the point where other patrons left) he's come up with-some other behavior just as bad. And who would ever think he'd stop the screaming stage, learn to not only speak, but to argue his way out of any manner of convoluted situations, and then move onto breaking into the neighbor's house and stealing panties?

    No physical fights are great, Crazy Mama. The F-word I could do with-o. Sigh. One day at a time.