A few weeks ago I was at Kohl's ( surreptitiously) to buy some non stick pans
(Last month I read an article on the evils of Teflon and gave away all our non-stick despite much pleading from DH –" its poison.. do you want us to slowly get killed by our food " – I told him sanctimoniously.)
A few months of cooking in stainless steel however, has weakened my resolve against non-stick because- the other stuff – well it sticks )
I see this couple with a little girl- maybe 4 .
The little girl is talking non-stop. The way they are listening to her nonsense in that adoring fashion announces clearly that they are her grandparents.
(I recognize that fatuous look – as I have seen it so often on R's grandparents face. )
Distracted by her chatter (as she is advising the couple buy all sorts of nonsensical products) I drop the pan I am holding.
The man turns around and jokes "Quickly put that back on the shelf.. we wont tell anyone "?
I smile back and say – "your little girl is adorable – are you guys the parent or the grandparents"
"Grandma!!" the woman chuckles back delightedly "but thanks for thinking we could be parents"
As they walk away after some more chit chat – their gait is a little springier and they both have smiles on their face
If a single compliment from a stranger can do this
Just think of the immense power of the energy that a parent sends out to their child.
It's like sunlight to our little saplings
In my own life as a professional and grown up I see this. When working with people who I know respect and love me I become smart and witty and just flower. When working with people who are critical of me I become defensive and strained and shrivel up .
Most of the time our energy for R is very positive.
And I think a lot of the reason why R is doing as well as he is doing is because of the great glow of positive expectation that surrounds him.
Starting from his parents, seeping into our extended family and trickling into his team of teachers and therapists.
DH especially is very good with a general feeling that R will be fine and has been from the start.
I took a little while where I was so swamped down with guilt and anxiety ( still there but no longer my primary feeling )
But I need some reminding these days as we are coming to terms with just how bad the Apraxia is.
His motivation to speak is great. His receptive language while very immature is also present
But his ability to form the words – its just dreadful
Even I have trouble understanding him and he will look at me asking for something urgently, with a look of such great expectation in his eyes.
It simply breaks my heart
One of his speechies said this at the last school meeting " we don't know if he will ever acquire functional speech .. but he is so intelligent he will certainly communicate"
The first few toxic words have rung in my ear and keep peeping out of my subconscious
I am at such a loss – without speech (ever ) how will he meet other developmental social milestones?
Some days the task of being a good mother – which means providing all the things your child needs – is so daunting.
But in spite of the terrible challenge our child face
Or maybe even more so because of it
Sending out positive energy is critical. And I don't mean simply loving your child. For even in my deepest anxiety – I love this child deeper.
What I mean is, beaming out the message to your child
You are awesome
There are so many wonderful things about you
I am blessed to have you in my life
You will do awesome things in life
This is not just for the great good of your child – but also for our everyday happiness. Everything is better in sunshine
Really what is a good life if its not a sum of mostly happy days !
To start, perhaps we need to start beaming out a positive message to ourselves too.
I know I need to replace my own energy –turn anxiety into hope.
I asked our speechie on Monday what she thought.
"He is only 4.. he is so smart and he is very keen to talk.. I certainly think he has a good chance"
I will hang on to this thought today down and reaffirm to myself this important hope ( and prayer )
R will be awesome!