Michael has been off the last few days. I wasn’t quite sure what it was. Was it the hot weather, the increased activity level at home and at school with play rehearsals, homework? Then I had a good look at him yesterday after school when he slapped me twice hard on the arm. Exhaustion. The child was exhausted, overtired, and needed a good night’s sleep. He also was in pain.
“Ouch Michael! We don’t hit! Are you mad at me?”
“No, Mommy. I’m sorry.”
“That really hurt my arms.”
And he proceeded to kiss both my arms and apologize.
“Why did you hit me?”
“I don’t know.”
Then I smelled something unsavory.
“Mommy, my tummy really hurts.” And he started to cry.
“Did you poop today?”
“Go lie down and I’ll make you some tea. It will help your tummy.”
“Thank you Mommy.”
And after some chamomile tea he was a new little boy. He still tested his father and I a lot last night, but thankfully, his Dad got him to bed early and I told him to tell the teachers at school today when he needed to do a bowel movement. The events of the evening got me thinking though about how physical pain and discomfort affect the way we think and approach others. Even as neuro typical adults, we sometimes neglect our bodies until they are crying out in pain. This affects our minds and outlook causing stress, pain, frustration and fights with loved ones. How many misunderstandings occur because we aren’t taking care of the body/mind balance?
Moms, how many times have you let your physical health go by not sleeping enough, eating right, taking care of a virus? How has it interfered with your relationships until you took ownership of it? Michael once again made me realize how I pay a lot of attention to how he is feeling on the inside and out when he is not acting like his usual self, and that I need to do the same for myself. I need to make sure I am checking in when something is physically off with me and fix it. I wish you all the same kind of attention to your own bodies. When your exceptional kids seeing you prioritizing your overall health, it will make it easier for them in time to do the same for themselves. Until next time.