We've all calmed down. And when I say we, I really mean me.
Noah has been on his best behavior today since the post-Gatorade incident. This afternoon he presented me with one of his favorite pencils. "Here Mom, this is for you" he said as he handed it to me then walked back into his bedroom. A peace offering from a pencil obsessed 7 year old.
Tonight was our fortnightly* appointment with the attachment therapist. Knowing that helped me not over react
We've spent enough time with Miss C that Noah was able to reach a point tonight where he was able talk about his behavior. It was a little rough in the beginning, but at one point it was like a switch turned on, and he took a big breath, and his brain was on and clear and he just started talking.
He wasn't able to give any real detail about what happened other than a kid was saying his name over and over and it irritated him, so he stepped on his foot. Usually Noah can more fully describe what happened, even when he knows what he did was wrong and that he is in trouble. I'll check his story with the TSS tomorrow, just to make sure he's not playing me, but I really do think the Gatorade, just like when he has something with a high concentration of red dye, irritates his system so much that not only does he act out, but he can't clearly remember what he did.
I know, it sounds like I'm making excuses for him. And I am, in a way, but mostly I'm just trying to understand why he does these things. For so long we had no understanding of why. Now though that I am able to put the pieces of attachment in place, and have a better understanding of how those first six months of his life really did impact the development of parts of his brain, I feel like I'm starting to understand him. And since I can relate to fear and the need to be in control, his behavior makes sense to me in a way it never did before.
So no, I'm not trying to excuse it, but understanding it makes me less reactive (in a negative way) when he does act out. And hopefully it will help me find a better way to help him. Because I really think there has to be a way to retrain his brain; to make the connections that didn't form when he was an infant.
As a slight aside, this was one of the first times I was able to interact with him with another adult present that is an "expert." I mean interact with him when his brain is "on" and he talks like he does with us normally, but rarely does with another adult present. His thought processes are fascinating to me, but I really had no idea if they were "normal," not having much experience with other 7 year olds.
Truthfully, I really didn't think they were "normal." And certainly not the way he moves from one thought to the next, before he really finishes the first thought. His thoughts are connected, and they aren't totally off, but wow, they move fast. He probably takes in the first six words or so of what we say, and then he's off and running with it, even though we aren't finished.
And yes, she confirmed that his thoughts are very scattered
We talked tonight about what he could have done differently, and what his plan is for tomorrow. He told us he would like to write the good options on his hand and arm so he could look at them if he needed to. I thought that was pretty clever actually.
I do think he will have a great day tomorrow. And from there we will keep moving forward. And hope the camp continues to work with us and that we can get him through five more weeks.
I told Rich tonight that I feel very confident that by the seventh or eighth week we'll have worked out all the kinks, and the ninth week should be smooth sailing.
Thank goodness Rich and I can still laugh together over this shit.
*Why do we have no good word for "every other week" in American English? "Every other week appointment" just doesn't flow. Biweekly is such an ambiguous term, which I've always interpreted as twice-weekly. Fortnightly sounds a bit affectatious** doesn't it?
**And yes, I did just make up the word affectatious! Refudiate it if you must.***
***This late at night, after I've taken an Ambien, I crack myself up, and really don't care if no one else thinks it is funny. I probably won't remember I wrote this tomorrow anyway.