Beautiful buddah-like baby sitting so pretty adoring the world around him. “My gosh, he is so sweet and well behaved!” “What a lovely boy!” “What a great mother you must be.” These are common comments I’d get years ago when I was raising my first child. He is an old soul and yes he listens, has compassion and is the ideal loving boy. However where’s there’s an up, there’s always a down. Shy kids are quiet and keep to themselves. You can’t pull out energy from a shy child, as it is up to them if they want to or will or ever speak up and look you in the eyes. They have no shell as many think they do. They just enjoy life in silence without having the expectation of being verbal or interactive with whom ever they are with. At times I wondered if my little guy was depressed. He didn’t run with the other kids, play games and hated preschool. Today he is 11 years old and has 3 really good friends he spends time with. Otherwise, he has no interest in others but seems to be pretty content and very communicative with my husband and me.
Fast forward to today six years later and my second boy is born…. He can use a spoon by age one, ride a two-wheeled scooter at age two and a bike with no training wheels by three. He is super boy. But it came at a price…
My daily thoughts are typically, can I get out of bed? Do I want to? Will he come pouncing into my room demanding I wake and pick out the ‘perfect’ outfit for camp? Will he shout that his cereal has gone soggy? Will his tantrum and scream-fest last 30 minutes or an entire hour? Is he running down the street or in the back yard? What if his camp shirt is dirty. OMG. The thought makes me cringe. When I’m in the store or at an airport and I see a completely out of control child, my eyes tear up. In my heart I know that parent is trying the BEST they can – with the public judging every move they make.
Yes, I am a parenting expert – but find I too, like any other parent – get torn down. I have the exact same nervous system as any other human being. When my child has endless difficulties managing his anger and disorganization – I can loose it too. Thank goodness for emotion coaching. It sometimes help de-escalate issues for both him and me.
My second son has Sensory Integration Difficulties. We noticed his advance physical activity when he was little and thought it was cool. But then the anger and rage that arose was strange. We wondered if he would eventually grow out of it. He didn’t. It got worse. This behavior shares traits with ADHD and ODD- two extremes forms of misbehavior not under a child’s own control.
I love kids. I have dedicated my entire life and career to educating parents about how to raise healthy and functioning kids. Yet I find myself saying, “That’s not my kid! My kid would NEVER HIT other kids and behave that way!” But it’s true. My kid is the one who hits at school and yells at the other kids… He has not mastered all his neurological senses in synchronicity yet. This is so sad and frustrating all at the same time. I thought I could make a difference and work with him to overcome the Sensory Issues — but It’s like pushing a bull up a hill. I’m often drained, tapped out and know I can’t do this alone or with my husband. We need a team to help us, the helpless, to learn to parent our son.
We have found that Occupational Therapy to be a good start. They work with him to get him to map out his actions. To think first, process then make decisions. Something most of us do without even thinking. He has to be taught this since his nervous system is not doing it for him. We hope the battle ends soon. I never would imagine that my child would be the violent boy in the class or the kids who doesn’t ever share. It goes against every thing I write in my books. I feel humiliated and embarrassed. It would be such a pleasure to wake up and enjoy breakfast – just once in awhile. I want him to tolerate socks other than white. I want him to let us move his toys without WW3 erupting. We hope that he can one day go one day without rage -induced tears. He is my son and he deserves the best.
I had no idea that I could possibly birth two completely different children. It has been a joy to watch my beautiful boys grow up – but a true challenge to balance harmony among every one.
This mom needs no fitness routine, as a I rarely get a chance to sit down – my cardio is in full force most of the time. I guess the universe gives you the exact children that you can handle. If that’s true, I just may be the real super woman. LOL. I love my boys.