This morning I had to take my son Michael to our local walk-in-clinic. Nothing serious. We suspect a possible UTI, and will know in a few days for sure. I got us both up early to get to the clinic for 8:00 am when it opened. We made it on time. Michael cooperated beautifully. I was relieved there weren’t too many people in the waiting room. Oh good, I thought .We’ll be out by 9:00. I was wrong. We waited till well after 9:30 am. just to be seen for a 5 minute visit. As most parents with small children can say, kids don’t wait well. As most exceptional parents of exceptional children can attest to, they don’t wait well at all! It was, needless to say, a challenge for both of us. For Michael, it was not understanding why he had to sit, not sing loudly, or squeeze random strangers hands (“I do it cause I’m excited Mommy!”). For me, it was making the increasingly busy environment sensory appropriate for my little man, and adapting it to him. Not easy to think so quick on your feet when you’re tired, worried and he just spilled some of your coffee on the floor. Oh well. 🙂 Needless to say, we both had to exhibit a lot of patience during the hour and a half wait. What worked eventually after sitting on my lap, hugging, squeezing my hands and me squeezing his (forgot the darn thera putty at home!), was walking around and sitting in a quieter area looking at videos and pictures of himself on my phone. Oh yeah, and twice going to the bathroom to pee. 🙂
I was so impressed the way Michael handled himself though. He kept nervously asking me, will I tell his teacher he did well? Will I say he had a hard time? He tested a few times, but overall, listened. I told him I would tell her how well he listened and that waiting quietly is hard for a lot of people, even big people. The me of a year or more ago would have been freaking out on the inside, occasionally even the outside. I’ve always had a hard time with things I can’t control, and it’s been in learning to go with the flow, that I’ve been most challenged. A dear Exceptional Mom friend of mine recently told me that if you’re ready to do something, to change something, your exceptional kids will pick up on it and it will work out. I used to think, I could never be calm like her. But now, especially in the last two months, I have seen her words come true in my life. I am feeling calmer over my emotions, and can model that to my son. Interestingly though, he has taught me this. Seeing how hard things are for him, and knowing that if I stay calm I’ll be more of a help, is what has changed me. I also am adopting better self care methods.
How calm are you with your Exceptional Kids Moms? What have they taught you about parenting, yourselves, life in general? Even during the challenging moments, our kids behaviors are speaking to us asking us to help guide them to learn better and be their best selves. They deserve this as we do, and when you are working in sync with your child you’ll see how you’ll find the solutions together. Until next time.