Monday, July 2, 2018

Just a Little Patience....

Our lives center around the calendar that hangs on our kitchen wall. While Parker has some flexibility in it – the outline of our days is written in what might as well be stone. What isn’t in stone goes on the list we write each morning… going to the store, doing laundry, etc.

When something on the calendar on the wall doesn’t go as plan, it brings a bit of anxiety into our lives. And that was our Saturday this past weekend.

The plan was that Dan and I were going to a wedding while someone came to hang out with Parker (and by default, Allison, who would likely not come out of her room… hello 15) in the afternoon and then when I got home, I would pick up Parker’s friend, William and take the boys to the KARE talent show and dance.

Almost anything could have changed about our Saturday and we would have been fine. But the wedding and the talent show/dance – were the 2 things that were in stone. Changing them would mean disrupting our plans and opening the floodgates of anxiety. Of course, something changed, and I was not going to get to attend the wedding. Add my disappointment onto the change and you could just feel a catastrophe brewing… and I knew it.

To keep us as much on routine as I could we made a new plan. We would drive to Peoria, pick up Dan, drop him off at the wedding, go to Target, pick Dan back up, drop Dan off at the comedy club, pick up William, go to the talent show/dance. Parker thought this was awesome! But was anxious. And I was still disappointed. I knew my only chance of survival of this day and for Parker to have a successful evening was to snap out of this disappointment, tucking it deep inside so he couldn’t see it and feed off of it.

*Before I go further, I am sure you are thinking “Why not just take the kids to the wedding?” It seems so simple and logical, right? ------------------------------ I’m sorry, I had to step away while I laughed hysterically, I’m back.  It’s not that simple. Parker going to the wedding was never part of the plan. He didn’t want to which is why we made alternate plans. Telling him the day of that the plans had changed and now he was going to a wedding for people he didn’t know, that he did not want to attend, that was outdoors in 106 degrees heat, while convincing him that the rest of the day would go as planned – that is simply not how our life works. And the last thing I was about to do was put him in a situation to cause a scene at a wedding with people who barely knew him. I wasn’t doing that to him, to me or to the wedding couple. (Who, by the way, had a beautifully perfect day – I saw the pictures! Ah-mazing!)

He liked our plan of going to pick up Dan. On the drive over, his anxiety was building. I knew I needed to do something. I told him to call Dan to be sure he was awake for us to pick up. He loved this idea – so he called…. and no answer. So, he called again… and no answer. We agreed, Dan was in the bathroom and could not answer the phone so we would give him some time before calling again.

“Give him more time” in the world of Parker means giving him about 2.5 seconds before calling again. In my attempts to redirect him away from calling again – I reached over to tickle his leg… which he did not in any way appreciate but it sidetracked him a bit. Some back and forth joking came out of it and I was happy to see a smile from him. However, as quickly as it started, it was over, and he was ready to call again.

This felt like the right time to talk about patience again.

Me: “Buddy, breeeeaaaathe.”
P: “Deep breaths. That’s what Dan tells me.”
Me: “That’s right. Deeeep breaths.”

*We both inhale and exhale*

P – reaches for the button to re-dial.

Me: “Buddy, patience. Sometimes we need to wait. Waiting nicely is being patient. You can do it. Dan is busy. Let’s wait a little bit. Patience.”
P: “I hate patience.”

P – Reaches for the button.
Me – Reaches over and tickles his leg.

P: Clearly irritated with the entire situation, “Don’t tickle me. It’s not nice.”
Me: “Breathe.” (takes a deep breath) “We need to wait. Remember, we are going to have patience. Use our patience.
P: “I hate patience.
Me: “We don’t hate things.” (I’m such a mom).

Me: (attempting to be super clever) “Buddy, hold out your hand, I have something for you.”

P: Debating holding out his hand for me, unsure of what I am doing.

Me: “Dude, hold out your hand

P: Reluctantly holds out his hand.
Me: Takes the imaginary thing I have pinched between my fingers and place it in his hand.

P: Looking at me like I’ve lost my mind.

Me: “Look, it’s some of my patience, I wanted to share with you.”

P: Freaking out in the car, shaking and wiping off his hand… “EW! Get it off of me! I hate patience! Gross -  get it off!!

Me: Trying to focus on the road while tears are streaming down my face from laughing so hard.

Me: “Dude, Patience is a good thing! Here, let me get you some more.” Reaching to my side to pinch more imaginary patience to share with him and moving my hand towards his…
P: “No way! Don’t do it. I hate it. I don’t want your stupid patience.
Me: Pretending to put the patience on his leg because his hand was too far away. “Do not wipe it off, this is good! Patience is GOOD!”
P: “Don’t do that” while wiping off his leg.
Me: “Don’t you feel like you have more patience now? It feels good. Deep breaths
P: “I’m calling Daniel Patrick.” While reaching over to push the button to call him.

I wish I could say that bought me more than 2 minutes of time but, nope! Sometimes you just need a little patience and sometimes you just need to wipe that patience away and make your call 😉

Maybe next time, I’ll play some Guns N Roses in the background…

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