Thursday, May 19, 2011

When The Armor Comes Off

I won't lie to you - I wear a lot of armor each day.  I suppose we all do to handle the cards we've been dealt.  There's the usual armor - what you need just to be a person, woman, wife, mother, friend, etc, but then there are a few other pieces I put on too - the "I have a kid with disabilities" armor and the "My husband has MS" armor.  I layer all these on each day and most days I can deal with life's little hiccups and struggles - and I can do it usually with a bit of confidence too.  Tough day?  No problem!  I've got my armor on!  I'm invincible!

And then...well then there's PMS.  (Yes, my lone man reader, run now, I'm talking about pms).  PMS doesn't allow for any kind of armor to be worn.  My heart is right there, exposed to the world, waiting to be stomped on.   On this week, there is not protective shield, no invincibility.  Every comment strikes right to the heart with no softening of the impact.  Today was one of those days.

I pick up my kids from the child watch at the YMCA and the teacher wants to talk to me.  She's also a new teacher (and her kids are also in the room - always a grrreat combo {read sarcasm here}).  My heart sinks - teachers wanting to talk to you is never a good thing.  She rattles off about my awful kids (not sharing toys, taking toys from kids) and then adds in (pointing to Corbin) "And he was shaking his fist at me!"  She says it a few times so she gets her point across.

At this point, I'm just kind of shell shocked.  I mumble "Okay, I'm sorry" and exit the room before I burst into tears.  I head to my car vowing never to bring the kids back to the YMCA.  Meanwhile degrading myself from my obvious horrendous parenting skills that I can't even use the child watch without an issue.  Which, of course, is not true.  We've been going to the YMCA for 8 months and I've only ever had one other bad report.

I get to our car, still processing all I just heard.  I just stand there for a minute.  Partly because two morons have made it almost impossible for me to get into my car by parking inches from each door.  Intellectually, I know I'm emotional and not filtering everything correctly.  Emotionally, I'm a wreck.  I'm thinking a thousand thoughts a second.

I decide to go back up there and confront her.  I know what I need to say, but I don't want to say it.  I don't like having to say it.  I like to pretend like it doesn't exist, but it does and today it's staring me in the face.

We go back.  I, first, have Hayden apologize to his teachers for not listening.  Then, I address the other thing.

He wasn't shaking his fist at you or threatening you.  He's ...disabled.  He has global developmental delays.  His fine motor delays and sensory processing issues keep his fists closed most of the time and when he gets excited or upset he will close his hands and just wave them around.  He wasn't intending to harm you, it's just something he does.

 The problem is immediately diffused.  But I just hate having to say all that.  I want him to be treated like any other kid, and I know one day he will be like any other kid, so my preference is not to mention anything.  Typically, his differences don't affect his interactions with kids or teachers, and often they even go unnoticed.

On a normal armor day, it would have rolled right off - never penetrating.  My confident self would have said, "Well, that's just life with kids".  But today, it meant crying in my car on the way home and admitting to myself that even when I don't let things "touch" me, they still hurt sometimes.



Joy said...

Thanks for being real and vulnerable on your blog.

AMH said...

That's hard. :( I'm glad you went back and told her will probably open the door for more understanding the next time and she will be less likely to think of it as an "incident."