I’ve been observing Lucas lately and it’s interested me to notice that he is having a lot of the same behaviour issues that Harley had when he was 3 going on 4.
The screaming when it’s bedtime, the tantrums when his Nintendo (or any important toy that he wants) is taken off him, the refusal to eat his food, the word “no” being well and truly overused.
I’ve always said that Lucas has been a relatively “easy” child and that Harley has been a handful from the get-go.
But, they appear to have swapped temperaments lately, so now I’m asking myself:
“What’s regular 4-year-old behaviour (pushing boundaries, being difficult and defiant, exercising strong will etc) and what is age appropriate for a child with aspergers?”
And I’m also wondering just how much of Lucas’ behaviour is “copied ” from what he’s witnessed in Harley his entire life? After all, most of the behaviour he’s ever seen of Harley is meltdown after fit after more fits.
He’s probably also seen me give in to him on far too many occasions just because I don’t have the strength to keep fighting and just want peace at any cost!
I sense that Lucas is getting frustrated because he is having difficulty making himself understood and wonder if that is also contributing to his mischievous behaviour of late?
Although, he did say a full sentence to me only yesterday:
I handed him a biscuit, and he cocked his little head on the side and asked me ” Is this biscuit gluten-free Mum?”
I laughed and hugged him - I was SO proud! (and yes it was!)
I have had a pretty good day today but it got even better when I checked my inbox late this afternoon and I opened a very special e-mail that made my heart leap!
It was from my mum’s best friend (who is also the mother of MY best friend) -work that one out, it’s not as hard as it seems) and she encouraged me beyond belief!
She was always like a second mum to me and my sister growing up , and my mum was to her 3 children as well.
She had a son who was 12 months younger than me who had a heart condition (amongst many other things) and sadly he passed away 12 years ago this month.
She went on to write that she understood the lonely feeling that mother’s of “special” children can feel at times and the hurt you feel as a mum when your child is left out of “the circle” both by other children and their parents.
I was shocked, surprised and also quite saddened to read this.
You see…….we grew up with *Alexander and I always knew that he had health issues but I can never once remember us seeing *Alexander as anything but simply “*Alexander”. He was always just “one of us”.
If ever he was excluded from any of our games it was because he was the only boy amongst the 4 of us girls and it was because he wasn’t keen on the girly thing we were playing! ( poor kid!)
But he did everything that the rest of us kids did and had the most remarkable sense of humour!
So when I read about the similar heartaches that * Margaret experienced, I was able to relate to it in a way that I never would have, had I not had a “different’ child myself.
In fact I sat here and cried when I read her e-mail as I understood for the first time that the beautiful happy lady that we had grown up with had nursed the anguish of witnessing her child be noticably “different”.
Though I feel guilty even saying that as I know that my struggles are far less than what she had to deal with. And my challenges are not the same as hers.
*Margaret wrote something to me that was so profound and a PERFECT description for my life thus far (I absolutely HAVE to share it)
‘It’s in the winter that the trees shed their leaves, and look bare and even unattractive. However, under the ground the roots are drawing nutrients, growing bit by bit, and becoming more secure and able to hold the following spring’s “leafed tree” more securely afterwards. I remember telling myself MANY times: “In the winter, the roots go down.” Spring is on its way!!!
And so it is. Metaphorically and literally.
* Not their real names. Changed to protect their privacy.