Friday, July 9, 2010

A boy and his marker.

It's been a weird day.  I feel like my mind is not 100% present all the time.  And I feel like I'm awkward.  And that everything's awkward.  It's hard to explain.

We had feeding and speech therapies today.  As we were walking out the door I just happened to remember to grab the food.  Kind of important for feeding therapy, you know?  And when I prepared her food ahead of time, I was feeling very on my game.

Feeding therapy went well.  She was very cooperative.  And even though she did vomit during it, she still managed to eat over five ounces.  Not bad.  We said our good-byes (since we won't be seeing Allison for a while) and headed on over to speech therapy.

And that's when I realized that we forgot Harlie's speaking device.  Ugh!  And then, once we got into the room, I realized that we forgot her speaking valve.  Ugh!  I hate the way I feel during moments like that.  It's like all the good things and good thinking I've ever done evaporate into thin air.  Grrr!

So, I try hard to tell myself that it's okay.  My mind is elsewhere right now.  It's understandable, right?  Please remember that you thought it was understandable as you continue to read this post.

Luckily, her therapist was okay with it and she proceeded on - and got Harlie to verbalize "yellow duck" and "brown."  I couldn't believe it!  It was wonderful.  Of course, she won't say them again.  Well, maybe she will in time.  But, certainly not on command!  Which is typical, I know.

Then I dropped them off at the house and went on to my hair appointment.  A while ago I got a chunk of my hair dyed pink.  While it was fun, it was not really noticeable.  So, I went back to get more pink.  And more pink I got!  I know, it's weird.  I'm 38 for crying out loud, and I have hot pink highlights.  What gives?  Well, I'm not really sure to tell you the truth.  I guess my thinking is that it's fun and harmless, not permanent, and why not?

But as I was leaving the salon, I couldn't help but feel this awkwardness with the people who work there.  Almost like I walked up in the middle of a secretive conversation, that they were dying to get back to the second I walked away.  I, of course, could do nothing but interpret that awkwardness as them thinking I was completely off my rocker.

Come to think of it - it was right before her last heart surgery that I went and got a perm.  Yes, a perm!  Maybe I don't make the best fashion decisions under stress.

Luckily, Tom said he likes it and that he doesn't think it's too much pink.

But I'm still feeling awkward for some reason.

So, when Tom got home, he started making dinner.  I am SO not your typical stay-at-home mom.  I can't cook worth a darn.  And have NO interest in learning.  But, I did manage to make a pretty flavorless guacamole for our fish tacos.  And prepared it in advance.  Pretty good, huh?

Well, during my clean up process (oh, and I make one helluva mess when I do attempt to make anything edible) Cooper came into the kitchen wielding a red dry-erase marker and proceeded to draw on the cabinet that I was (luckily) standing next to.  I, of course, scolded him as any good mother would, stood up and looked around.

It was as if I was never in the same room with this kid!  He had drawn all over the white kitchen table (which is located right NEXT to where I was standing making my delicious barely edible guacamole), and the end of the sofa, and some of the walls and all over the ottoman.

I mean, I was right THERE!  The kids were watching Toy Story 2, all being good and quiet.  Well, okay, ALL were not being good.  Quiet, yes.  Good, no.

So, Tom gets home, makes the rest of the dinner (thankfully) and goes upstairs to change clothes.  He gets halfway up the stairs and yells out, "Christy, I take it you haven't been upstairs lately?"


No. Please tell me it's just dirt. Or toys? Lots of toys all scattered about.  All dangerously placed on the stairs.  Clean and folded clothes dumped from the hamper?  Poo?  Anything but red, dry-erase marker!  Which, in case you're wondering, only wipes off easily from a dry-erase board.  Walls, furniture, not-so-much.  And yes, I know this from recent (meaning Cooper) experience.

So, I reluctantly go to the scene of the crime.  And, yes.  There is red, dry-erase marker everywhere.  And I mean, he left no room untouched.  Luckily, our, Harlie's and the kid's bathroom doors were shut.  As we walked around we could see where he found the marker (despite all attempts at keeping markers in a case on a high shelf).  In Murphy's top desk drawer.  Cooper clearly found the marker, and then proceeded to decorate everything from his wooden chair to his quilt, sheets, and bed frame, walls and closet doors.  Then he left Murphy's room and hit the hallway, doors and baby gate.  Then he went into his own room and walked around the perimeter marking on anything that had a flat surface - and even a stuffed animal(?).  Yeah, I don't get it either.

Then he left his room and headed to the third floor stairs (marking on the halls as he went).  He marked on the carpet of most of the stairs, the threshold at the top of the stairs, the walls, trunk and lamp shade.  Yes, the lamp shade!  What is up with this kid????

It was at the sight of the stairs that I completely lost it and could not stop laughing.  I mean, what else can you do?  It was so overwhelming that laughter seemed to be the only solution.  And I can't help but picture him strutting around with his shoulders back and belly sticking out, just marking away.

We are speculating that after he hit the third floor, he headed all the way down to the first floor where I heroically noticed that he had a red, dry-erase marker and scolded him like the good, watchful mother that I am.

After that, we all sat down to eat dinner.  Yummy fish tacos with lime sour cream and flavorless guacamole.

And that awkwardness seemed to sit right down with us at the table.  I could totally tell that Tom had a lot on his mind.  I, clearly, have a lot on my mind.  Harlie was VERY uncooperative eating.  Cooper didn't like the fish and I can't help but worry about Murphy.

I think there's trouble in paradise between him and C.  Okay, he told me Tuesday that he got in trouble with Ms. Frances and that she told him to just leave C alone for the day.  After me asking a bazillion questions, I finally surmised that he was following C around and it got on her nerves.  She told Murphy to stop.  He didn't listen.  So she told Ms. Frances, who then told Murphy to just leave her alone.  Ugh.  How will my heart take it???  He has not mentioned her name since.

I hope he's having fun at Summer Blast and getting along okay with the other kids.  But, I have a sneaking suspicion that he's not feeling all that great about it.  Tom says I am totally reading too much into it.  I hope he's right.  But Murphy doesn't have Summer Blast on Fridays and I won't be there on Monday to talk to them to find out more information!

And this damn awkwardness!  I had to just say it (once Murphy was excused after he barely spoke at dinner).  And Tom agreed.  It's just this weird feeling.  We know each day we are closer and closer to some sort of living hell for parents.  And, for Harlie.  It just makes for weirdness.  So many feelings we're trying to control, ignore, displace and accept.

Somehow we'll get through it.  I know.  Maybe I should focus on finding a paint color for the upstairs hallway.  That's been on our list since we moved in, anyway.  But not until I find and hide (perhaps we should get a gun safe?) every stinking marker in this house!



Tanya said...

This is an amazing post. Reading it brought me right back to the pre-op days that we've faced. My thoughts and prayers are with all of you as Harlie's big day draws near.

Ann said...

Christy - I'm glad you could laugh at the marker escapade, I think I would have lost it!

I can only imagine the emotions you are processing right now. Just know that there are many people in the cyber-world who care dearly for Harlie even though we've never met her. Harlie and all of you will be in my thoughts and prayers next week.


Rene said...

Honestly, I've never known that feeling. Tommy's surgeries were always a surprise. Not sure how I would have handled things knowing what was around the corner. I know it must be very, very stressful!

On a side note, I sent you a message on facebook with a link to a website that might make you feel better about the marker situation.

Heart Hugs!!!!!


Scott & Sarah said...

So, I've decided that I will not re-paint my house until my 4th is at least 5. Until then, I just tell everyone that the style in most of the rooms is "Early American Toddler"

I know what you mean by "what can you do but laugh".
When you come over, I'll have to show you what an 8 year old, an ink pen and a ceiling fan looks like.


Kristen said...

There are days you don't feel like it, I am sure....but you are an AMAZING mom!

And someone mentioned a website above, and it might be this one...but google "Sh*t My Kids Ruined" and you will find that you're not the only one with a desrtuctive child :) It's a hilarious website! My favorite is the "DesiTwins."

Susan said...

Oh WOW Christy! Like Ann, I would have lost it. You are a great mom and your kids are so lucky that you are so patient and kind.

I know that feeling all too well. There have been many times I've not quite felt on my game while I've been preoccupied with surgery or important decisions for Ainsley. I like to think it's totally normal.

Love and hugs to you, Harlie, and your entire family. We'll be thinking about you.

Grandma said...

What am I in for???? Grandma will be sending out an SOS!!!! See you soon.

Kim said...

I laugh, and yet my heart breaks for you simultaneously. That post just so summarizes what it must be like right now. Tough, tough situation. I wish I could alleviate some of it.

Hugs, my friend. And drinks Saturday. Thinking of you!!!!!