Special Powers. Special Missions.

Yesterday was our last day of family vacation time. Man, going back to real life, wow. We thought we’d be able to take Javan to the zoo before vacation time was up, as a reward for doing so well on the Texas-Indiana trail, but Momma being down with strep brought a halt to those plans. So, yesterday we decided we’d go to a movie instead.

Somehow or another, we ended up in town too early so we decided to stop by a favorite thrift store (Hope’s Closet for ya’ll locals) to pass some time. Bad move. At one point early on in the shopping expedition, a very nice man who was browsing the toy aisle with his wife accidentally dropped a metal baseball bat on the floor. It really was more of a “ping” than a “bang.” No biggy. Javan was down on the floor playing and looked over at the man, who was smiling and said, “Well, what’d you do that for?” He spoke in a friendly, easy going manner and was obviously just wanting to make Javan laugh. Of course, you know by now that Javan was offended and furious at the false accusation. He was stunned enough at having a grown man resort to such immature behavior that Mom and Dad had enough to swoop in and have our little talk about what the man said and what the man meant. I think we both thought the idea got across. Until every chance he got, Javan tried to attack the guy. Fortunately enough, we were on top of it and I’m not sure the guy really paid much attention. And fortunately enough, he left soon.

Enough time had passed after these incidents that we  don’t think that had anything to do with him running away from us all through the store. The little stinker’s fast too, so I was glad there was two of us to herd him together. Apparently, it does get less embarrassing with time. I really wasn’t too phased. Angry, maybe a little. The embarrassment came more with the insistent yelling from the shopping cart that was his inevitable punishment for running away.

We left and went home for some down time and decided we’d gauge his behavior and see if a later showtime would be a good idea. Whoa! You would think the whole world just fell apart! Even though he knew he’d get another chance at catching the movie that day, it was such a tragedy to have to wait a couple of extra hours.Whenever we would say anything about him running away in the store, he felt very justified in screaming, “I was on a MISSION!” In retrospect, he did have that secret spy something about him at the time and I think I remember hearing the word “mission” jut before all hell broke loose. Apparently it wasn’t a very nice mission either, involving him killing someone. No one specific. That I know of anyway. I really haven’t thought to ask until now just who he’s taking his orders from? Pity he’s asleep.

When he finally reached a state that could loosely be termed “calm,” we had our usual talk about kids who get separated from their parents, strangers who are looking to steal children, and how lone children are the easiest prey. I’m really, really trying to be honest with him about what the world is without traumatizing him, but I honestly don’t think the concept will sink in until I show him a youtube video of some poor mother sobbing while telling the story of her kidnapped child who had run away in a store. Don’t worry. I’m not there yet.

Okay, so we did make it to the movie after some quiet time at home. It was “Puss in Boots” at the dollar theater of course, because we know better than to risk full price on a theater outing with this kiddo. Good thing too, because he didn’t make it halfway through before declaring, “I don’t like this movie.” Once he’s uttered that phrase, there’s no talking to him. I tried to reinforce the concept that we talked about just before going to the movie. That every movie has sad parts or bad parts and they always pass. They always lead to better things. The person in the movie does not stay sad! It didn’t work. What is it with animated films and Mommy issues? I mean, maybe I’m the only one who’s noticed since my child has intense separation anxiety from his mother, but it seems like every movie we see has Mommy issues written all over it. Makes me wish sometimes I’d taken the whole “we don’t do TV” road. Then I remember that without the TV and movies to subdue him, Mommy may not have survived these five years.

In other news, a call from the endocrinologist confirmed that there is nothing whatsoever wrong with Javan’s thyroid hormones. The first test was just a fluke and he doesn’t need further blood tests for it or even to see that specialist anymore. Whew! It wasn’t a big deal, but still it’s nice to know that’s one thing we don’t have to worry about. I wish there was a blood test to detect why he’s begun waking up at night again. It’s only twice a night right now and I’m reassuring myself that it is because we’ve had so many adjustments in routine lately and it will pass shortly. However, that me that lives in the back of my brain and carries a big stick keeps piping up that it could be for that very reason, but that doesn’t mean it will pass shortly. It could mean that the routine changes triggered the entire cycle of sleep deprivation that will only worsen over the months to come. Isn’t she a lovely little negative Nelly.

As a final note of randomness to chew on, I’ll share an almost-conversation that we had in the car today. Javan says from the backseat, “Dad? Do you have the power of telling what people want?” Daddy said, sometimes it’s easy to tell what people want and sometimes it’s harder. He gave an example of when it’s easy – like if he had a bowl of ice cream and Javan was looking at it like he really wanted. Javan asked, “Would they do this *slurrrrp* and lick their lips?” The conversation continued for a short time and I asked, “Javan, do you have the power of telling what people want?” Pause for thought. “Well, I have the power to fight. And the power to tell what people are doing.” I don’t remember where the conversation went from there because he got exasperated and checked out with a typical “whatever.”

That question from him really kind of sunk my heart. He wants to be able to tell what others want. He wants to please others. And he knows he’s missing something. All he can see is what people do, and he’s realizing that others see something else too. Something he can’t. He wants to know how to get it. So I guess it’s my job to figure out how to give it to him. But I can’t help feeling like I’m missing something too. Why did he mention the power to fight? I mean, he does play secret spy and super hero a lot, and I do mean a lot. And talks about how he’s the best fighter in the world even more. But why was fighting and observing the actions of others his answer to,l “Can you tell what others want?” Actions make sense. And they do tell us a lot about what people want. But fighting? Does something about his history of intense aggression have to do with not knowing what others want? Or is it some sort of mechanism to find out what others want? Ugh! I just want to understand.

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