Thursday, October 28, 2010

Tugs at the heart...

Last night Milagro was really over-tired but she couldn't settle down. C. and I were trying to iron out a few details before she left this morning for a two day trip and Milagro just wouldn't let us talk. She was interrupting, asking for things and jumping on and off the couch. I had a glass of water leaning next to my leg and had told her she would get a time out the next time she jumped onto the couch. Of course, she didn't listen and she jumped up and knocked over my ice cold glass of water. My pants were absolutely soaked and I got really mad at her. I walked away and cleaned everything up and headed upstairs. She followed after me asking me to talk to her but I was too mad so I calmly(through gritted teeth) said to her "not now because I am very upset with you. Stay downstairs with Mama." A few minutes later she and C. came upstairs and Milagro continued to try to get my attention. I got into bed with my book and ignored her despite her antics. All of a sudden she started crying so C. held her and told her I was still too upset to speak with her so she was going to have to be patient. She started wailing "please Mama please! Is Mom not going to be my best friend again?" Then to me she said with tear-filled eyes "Sorry mom. Please talk to me. I need my best friend!"  How could I stay mad after that?

Then this morning Pollito got up and gave me his usual good morning greeting "Buenos Dias. Did you sleep good mom?"  I replied that I was still tired and responded in my usual fashion "Buenos Dias mijo, did you have any dreams?" He said he had a happy dream (he usually has several nightmares each night or doesn't remember his dreams) so I asked him to tell me about it. He said "There was you and me and we were walking in the flowers." "What else?" I asked.  He was quiet for a bit and then responded "And... and... I just loved you sooooo much and I could feel it mom!" I asked how it felt and he said "Like LOVE mom!!!!" What more could I ask for?

Later today Tortuga and Pollito's mother called. I missed the call but made a point to try to return it as soon as I had a chance. She wasn't able to talk then so we made plans to speak tomorrow. She sent greetings to the boys so I shared them with Tortuga. He asked why she hadn't been able to talk and I said I wasn't sure but she said it was her medication and maybe it was making her tired. He got a disturbed look on his face and said he didn't want me to talk about it and that he didn't want to speak with her tomorrow. I was puzzled so I inquired about what exactly he didn't want me to discuss. He responded that he was "guilty" and "embarrassed" when he thought about her. I asked him to elaborate and his elaboration didn't quite match his earlier word choices. We consulted a dictionary and after going through a couple of different word options (he has lots of language based challenges so often struggles to find the right words for what he means) he suddenly exclaimed "This is it mom! I am ashamed!" I was a bit stunned. He went on to explain that he was ashamed and embarrassed by his mother because of all the things she couldn't do and how she treated him and his brothers. My heart just about broke. I didn't want to negate his feelings but I was concerned about this sense of shame. I asked him to consider why he might ashamed of her but also how understanding her cognitive and emotional difficulties could change his feelings about this. He was puzzled for a moment and then asked me if I was ashamed of his mother. I couldn't quite understand what he meant but I said no I was not ashamed by yer and that while she made many mistakes and did things to hurt them (he has lots of memories about this) I didn't think it was all her fault. I said that I also believe that she has always done the best she could and if we cannot respect people for their best efforts then what can we respect them for. He got very quiet for a minute and then said "I never thought about that mom. I always thought she didn't try her best but now I think maybe she did try hard and it didn't work." I waited and he didn't say anything else about it and changed topics. As we were saying goodnight he said "Mom, I thought about what you said and I don't think I should be ashamed of her. If she calls tomorrow maybe I will want to talk to her. Will you ask me if she calls?" I replied that I certainly would.

6 comments:

Lee said...

Oh my gosh, tears welling up in my morning tea as I read your post!

Kathleen said...

Great conversation with Tortuga!

For excess of activity... I've always given pushups. (other exercises work well, too) Funny, even when they wouldn't obey in other ways, they'd almost always drop & do pushups. :-)

Funny story - my dd, then 15 or 16, had a guy-friend at the house and they were messing around, almost wrestling, and I warned 'em once, then said "Twenty." Her friend was then ~ 6'4". He looked at me like "Wha...?" I told him about pushups, he turned to ask my dd if I was really serious but she was on the floor doing pushups already. So he dropped and joined her!

Kathleen

GB's Mom said...

Such a difficult situation for him. :( Kudos for doing a wonderful job handling it :)

Carmel said...

This is so amazing that he is able to open up and explore what he is feeling! What a wonderful moment!

Mama Drama Times Two said...

Wow. What amazing work your kids are doing! Bask and wallow in all that loving and healing and insight!

J. said...

wow that is so amazing for T to be able to work all that out aloud. Great progress!

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