Well this weekend was our first very good weekend in a long time. Michael is adjusting slowly to the new rules around the house, his home schedule, and the challenging behaviors are slowly going down. He is learning to use his strategies to calm down with us reminding him most of the time, but there were a few times in the last week he used them without prompting. All of this has made me really enjoy the weekend again for the first time in a long time. And I have seen the difference in Michael. He is also more relaxed with the structure we have put in and interestingly more talkative and affectionate. Sunday morning over breakfast he was asking me questions about God, faith, and his grandparents. We had a pleasurable conversation and it was so relaxing. I thought at one time, wow. It’s a regular Sunday morning. Something we have not had in awhile. Later in the day we had the same kind of conversation over dinner outside on the patio. Throughout the day Michael would ask me for my time, would ask to talk or read to him, and would tell me he appreciates me. Though the weekend was a little tougher with Dad, he also had plenty of positive moments with his father too where he called his Dad amazing and said how much he appreciated him.
What were we doing right now that we hadn’t been? That was when I realized it. We had a structure and a schedule at home again, something Michael has always needed. It shows him what is coming next. We also have now implemented very clear guidelines of behavior on what he needs to do, act, and what is expected of him. He likes having this security and seems in general more relaxed. He said over the weekend that he feels good that he is listening and explained that it is hard hearing no. He wants to make more decisions. So I spoke to him about where he has control, and where he still has to relinquish some of it due to his age. I told him funny stories of when his uncle and I were kids and how we didn’t always like listening, but knew we had to. He loves hearing those. They are family stories and show him that he is not alone. I think we all need that. And I was relaxed and calm. Finally. I was trusting my parenting again, something I had not for awhile. I grew in these turbulent times too.
I was even blown away to see him also decide he would make an original craft today to keep busy. He is learning to find things to do and structure his time though this is still the challenge. With lots of summer energy with the heat wave that hit us today, this morning early we went for a walk in our neighborhood. We had more interesting talks, some disagreements and he shared some interesting facts like how walking in noisy places calms his mind. For me it’s the opposite. I love how Michael is slowly emerging from the anger and defiance that was characterizing his behavior over the last six months off and on. My little boy and all his talents are visible to me again, and I can continue to see the beauty behind the struggle, his and mine.
Exceptional Parents, what do your challenging times with your child teach you? Yes, there are the bitter moments when you are angry and may indulge in self-pity and regrets. But looking back, it forces you to be stronger as it does your child. True growth often happens only after great struggles. When you are in the moment it often seems hopeless, but don’t despair. Your rainbow weekend or weekday with your child is coming. Put in the hard work, the consistency and it will pay off for both of you. Then you and your child can grow together. Until next time.
I am a writer and parent coach whose passion it is to help other exceptional parents find joy, peace and love in parenting their exceptional children through the various challenges they face. I believe that a happy child can only develop if their parents are living their lives happy, whole and in balance. For more information on my coaching programs, please see my website: http://www.creatingexceptionalparenting.com. To book a free 30 minute exploration/consultation Skype session with me, please contact me by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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