Wednesday, April 09, 2008

So proud...

So proud....

I am so proud of my eldest. Justin has always been a brilliant, funny, and inquisitive child. He's always amazed me and my husband (and everyone else, for that matter) on his intelligence and swift mind. The kid was reading before preschool, for pity's sake! Of course, as my first, I thought that not only was he a smart kid, but that I was a GREAT mom for teaching him all of the academics and encouraging his mind. Nowadays, while I will accept that I did do a good job encouraging his interests, the majority of his speed is simply that: HIS.

But he's had more than his share of problems. Mainly, he was diagnosed as Executive Functioning which, as I ALWAYS SAID, means he's a high maintenance child. He needed things in certain orders, in certain textures, and with proper warnings. If a situation didn't go as planned, and he wasn't forewarned of its possiblity, his mind simply couldn't handle it and all hell would break loose. For example: if we were going to go to soccer practice, he would have to be explained that he would need his shirt tucked in (sensory issue with him), that if it rained, it might get cancelled but rescheduled, and that they may win OR lose, but it will still be fun.


Every. Single. Game. We would have to cover these issues every time with him. On every outing! And hopefully, we would cover all possible scenarios, or else he could lose it. (I had weeks of talks with him over our Florida plane ride. Removing shoes in public! Ears popping! Not enough window or aisle seats! The list was huge...) Nothing more rewarding as a parent than to see your 6 or 7 year old flipping out over something trivial. Especially in front of whole other groups of parents. Good stuff.


I remember in second grade, during the Christmas party, when prizes were given out for only 4 or 5 kids and my son, of course, didn't win one. He was so upset that he sat at his desk, crying, with his head down for most of the party. Sigh...


My point today is this: somehow, during the course of this past summer, he grew up. Somehow, after getting off of the Strattera for ADHD and getting his 3rd grade teacher (a saint. An absolute perfect match for Justin), he has matured. Justin still likes to get his possibilities for the day (or year!) laid out, but knows that life is messy. He has somehow learned that you can't always map out the good stuff. That a little rain won't melt you, and that winning isn't everything (though it's definitely more fun than losing).


I was hit with this revelation of his maturity last night, as he left his warm McDonald's nuggets in the van (don't judge) to go run off into the heavy drizzle for soccer practice. In. The. Rain. He was so tall. So fast. So.... Old....


And when soccer practice got cut short by the sudden downpour? Instead of crying? Instead of freaking out? Instead of any number of tantrum behaviors he could have exhibited last season? He happily kicked his ball back across the field to my van. I watched him through the windshield, getting momentary glimpses through the wipers of this amazing boy of mine. My heart swelled with pride at the young man he is becoming and how far he has come...


Love you, BooBoo.
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