Tuesday, September 21, 2010
Oh, Sean, Sean, Sean. You know, the first week of Kindergarten Sean seemed to be having such a bad time that I felt really sorry for him. Ached for him, in fact. This week, I realize, I really should feel sorry for his teacher, and I do. She is such a sweet and gentle young lady. I'm sure that she is used to kids who are smart, rambunctious, shy, not shy, who color outside the lines, who need extra help and who shove glue sticks up their noses. I wonder if she's ever taught a kid who gazes down haughtily from a lofty intellectual perch and occasionally graces the common folk with his presence. Such children think themselves above the resultant indignities of things like circle time, story time, the coloring of bears, and being forced to wash one's hands when certainly they are not dirty. These children cannot be expected to wear pants which have waistbands that may cover any part of the picture of Thomas the Tank Engine on one's shirt.
His teacher is at a loss as to how to deal with Sean when he is refusing to comply with a requirement. She wants him to wash his hands and instead of just doing it, he doesn't see why he should. She insists, and so he responds by laying down on the floor in a prone position, hoping to stay there until everyone around him forgets that he was supposed to wash his hands. At school, this cannot be tolerated, and I understand that. He's not learning anything, he is being disruptive and distracting, not to mention that some of the other kids might think laying on the floor like that is a good idea. But I don't know what to tell her! She wants to have a teacher's conference so that I can tell her what to do with him, and the only answer I have is "I don't know."
Once something like this happens to him during his day, it's over for the day for him. He immediately powers down like some robot on stand by. His arms go limp, his little robot gumball lights dim, and he will not cooperate again until the proper voice command in the correct voice print is administered. The, uh, proper voice command is :"SEAN!! Get yerself up off that floor NOW!!!" Proper voice print is MY voice. When he hears it, he knows, he better move, and I mean now. I do know that he does not like it when Mr. Principal gets involved. Such terrible authority makes him feel powerless and bitter. It may work for the moment, but I would hate for him to hate school or dread it every day.
I did finally find out the other day from the Special Services office why he was turned down for special ed services last year. He had several evaluations. OT, PT, speech, cognitive, and I don't remember what all. Every one of those evals said that services were recommended in the professional opinion of the evaluator. However, every eval ALSO said Sean had "advanced intelligence," "highly developed problem solving skills," "will learn more quickly than his peers," "advanced vocabulary skills," etc. The woman in the office told me that was why he was turned down for services-because he was "too smart." I wanted to say, "Excuse me, um, have you ever heard of AUTISM???"
Wednesday, September 1, 2010
Lately I have begun to be afraid that Sean will be an exhibitionist. At least, he would be labeled that way. It isn't that he WANTS to show himself, as an exhibitionist does. It's just that he doesn't really care. I guess really he's an anti-inhibitionist. He has no appropriate sense of modesty. I say no appropriate sense, because he does have some sense of it. It just doesn't have anything to do with keeping his clothes on like it does for the rest of us.
Yesterday he got out of the bathtub, and was walking around naked. I told him to get dressed, and he informed me haughtily that he doesn't WEAR clothes in the morning. Apparently this rule applies to the rest of the day, too, because he can be found naked at just about anytime. You might say, "well, Mom, get some clothes on that kid!" Have you ever tried to put clothes on a cat? Sean doesn't want to wear clothes anymore than your cat does. He does wear them sometimes. Last week, we had relatives over for several hours and he managed to stay clothed the entire time. If I try to force him into clothes when he's refusing to be dressed, I'm fighting a losing battle. Even if I manage to wrestle them onto him, he just takes them off. He knows he won't be playing outside or going to McDonald's if he doesn't have his clothes on.
School starts next week, he will be going to kindergarten. And Mommy will prevail. He will be wearing clothes. But then my problem will be his intense pickiness with clothes. When he does wear clothes, he's a real Diva. One of his hobbies is to get out every stitch he owns and try them all on one at a time. When he's done with one thing, it is discarded, on the floor of course. And in the end he comes out wearing nothing most of the time. Of course, everything has to match perfectly. Ok, that I can understand. Where we run into trouble is when he doesn't want THAT pair of white socks, he needs the other pair of white socks and expects me to find them. Or he wants that green shirt with the dinosaur on it because it's the only shirt that matches THESE pants. So we are beginning now to enforce a condition. Night before, we are going to pick out what he is going to wear and he is NOT going to be allowed to change his mind in the morning, so he has to choose carefully.
Now, William, on the other hand, doesn't really deliberately go about in the nude. He just gets out of the shower and tends to forget to get dressed. Once he was just stepping out of the bathroom (naked), and at that moment the doorbell rang. I tried my dangedest to get to that door before him, but I didn't make it. He flung the door open and said, "Hi!" in all his manly glory. The two Jehovah's Witness ladies on the door step were most admirably unruffled, as is their way, and I told them I couldn't talk to them just then. As this was quite obviously true, they made no protest. And this, people, is the story of my life.