So, I learned my lesson. I was dreading Spring Break given the kids' roller coaster behaviors and the Creator in his infinite wisdom helped me avoid it by making me ill. I was so sick I couldn't even enjoy the benefits of getting to stay in bed with a good book, the TV, or even my computer. I emerged from sleeping every few hours to referee some important kid squabble to to "supervise" dinner but otherwise much of last week is a blur. I had hoped to use that time to do a bit more "data collection" about what is going on for Tortuga but I only have bits and pieces of information. C. reported he had only 1 meltdown between Monday and Saturday because he didn't want to do his sentences. Otherwise, he had some small bumps but his behavior was better. a little more predictable. Of course, we had him on a very limited schedule. Reading, drawing, writing and physical activity outside by himself were the only things he got to do all week. It was a predictable schedule with each activity punctuated by tapping and practicing patience. He has had a lot of structure, limited interaction with his siblings, and doesn't have to "fight" anyone for my attention. (He always demands my attention when I am interacting with any of the other children and that often leads to problems with him controlling his tone, faces, body, mood, etc.)
I finally was able to drag myself out of bed on Saturday to take them to the rodeo fairgrounds for a few hours. Rides, games, petting zoo, kid rodeo, and pig races. They had a blast! We had hoped to actually take them to see bull riding but I could only muster about 4 hours of energy before I was completely spent. We came home and watched a movie then took them out for late night (8:30 pm) ice cream treats! They teased me that I must really be sick since I NEVER take them out for ice cream after bedtime. I am reminded of all the simple pleasures and was grateful to be able to enjoy them for a few hours.
Yesterday Tortuga and Corazon started flag football again. They love that. Tortuga is on a new team although he hasn't really noticed much except that he kind of remembered one of the coaches who he had in the fall. He also has 3 kids from his previous team but he hasn't seemed to notice. Good thing this league is pretty laid back and they take the kids wherever they are without judgment. In fact this winter season on the next to last session Tortuga managed to play for the wrong team for an entire Sunday (that's one hour of practice followed by an hour of game time) without ANYONE noticing (including his parents....) Corazon is the smallest players but one of the fastest. Her team finished third last season and so they managed to keep an almost intact team for this season. I love her coaches. They have several kids on the team who cannot seem to find the ball even when it is in their hands but these two coaches have managed to turn the bunch into "football" players, a team, all while giving ALL the kids playtime and nurturing a love for the game. You can tell the coaches like winning but boy do they hide it. Anytime one of the kids complains they aren't scoring the coach will ask "are you having fun?" or "are you playing your best?" and then reiterate that "that's all that matters no go out there and play your best!" It is wonderful to see and I almost moved Tortuga to this team but didn't want to infringe on something that is Corazon's. I doubt that she would mind but I think for now they do better on separate teams. His team won and hers lost their scrimmage games. You would have thought it was the Super Bowl the way Tortuga bragged about winning!