So today is back to school from Spring Break and the wear and tear on Michael’s nerves erupted a bit on Saturday night and last night. Change and the unknown have always been difficult for Michael to handle. As he has gotten older, and fortunately better at expressing himself, we have seen the toll change and transitions have taken on his nerves. First, he gets VERY physically active, then talks a lot, more than usual. Finally, things start adding up and his nerves get pushed over the edge until an innocent comment from his Dad or I send him over the edge. We had two mini meltdowns on the weekend based on exhaustion, nerves and transition/changes. I’m beginning to read his signs better, but as we haven’t seen outbursts like these in two months, they took me a little by surprise. Then I realized. Ah, yes, the back to school routine is stressful. He will act out with behaviors when he doesn’t know how to read his own signs. He will be extra wild until he gets those feelings out. Too late, both nights I realized and though I helped him defuse his meltdown and went over his calming down strategies with him, there was still something I learned from these incidents as did Michael. We both need to read his signs of stress better, him more than me, because he knows the tools, only needs to be reminded to use them. Once I reminded him, he knew what to do.
We had so many beautiful moments even with the stress. He has been cuddling more, talking and dancing and laughing a lot too. He had a great visit with his grandparents and godmother, but brewing beneath the surface was that tension, that dread, that stress eating him up. At least that’s the way I see it. I used to feel a bit like that as a child myself. I learned later in life techniques to manage it, or I would suffer in silence. The result was low self-esteem, and stomach or leg pain, but as I found ways to heal myself, I found ways to deal with stress too. I hope to encourage Michael to find his own now so he doesn’t have to wait until adulthood to battle his inner demons.
Exceptional Parents, how do your Exceptional Children and you handle transitions and change? What has worked ? What hasn’t? I know for us staying true to who Michael is and who we are as his parents have helped us find our balance in what works and what doesn’t. Michael is a mover and shaker, so no more pushing him to deep breath. I have our Psycho Educator to thank for that reminder. We also try to model different techniques for him too. Whatever way you handle it with your children, remember you know them best. You are their caregiver. So trust your instinct and always go with that first. Until next time.