I am writing this on Tuesday, today we went to speech class. We have been seeing the same teacher for years now and have our time down to once a month for many reasons.
This is a wonderful time for Zach normally, he shines at speech. He is usually more verbal for her, works well, does his task with care and a decent amount of attention. Sure he has his off days but who doesn’t?
Today was one of those off days. Today he started the session normally, then within a couple of minutes I could tell there were going to be issues. His eye contact was nonexistent, sitting still was simply not happening. Yet he still said he was good and ready to learn. Each visit she does different tasks with him this time we had a book to read followed by story questions, then a new building block type to play with.
He read his book and then refused to answer questions. When she pulled out the question sheet he just said “NO”.
We did the whole “Great words Zach, thanks for telling us what you want”, however, didn’t let him get out of work. So we fought and compromised and he did 3 of the 8 questions.
Then came time for the building toy. She pulled out the blocks and a little book that came with them filled with ideas. We thumbed through the book and he picked one to do, a hard one. So each of us took blocks and tried to build it. I was the farthest along and Zach realized this and then got angry. He smashed his hand down on my blocks destroying them all. We both correct him and try to get him to tell us what’s wrong. He just ignores it and starts giggling. I nearly burst into tears. Instead I pulled my blocks off to the side, pouted and continued the task while his speech teacher tried to explain why he made me sad. Eventually they both joined me on the floor and we built different things.
Then the last activity came, we built a book he took cut outs and placed them in a tiny premade book we asked him questions and wrote the words for him. If the rest of the day wasn’t an indicator already the 1st thing he did today was hide one of the cutouts. (it was lighting and storms scare him) after the 1st one he started saying no. The second one we coaxed him back, by the third page he was done. The only thing he would say was no. No matter how much we tried “No” was his answer.
Finally, we finished our time and started the long trek home, it is over an hour drive, at about the halfway point is my husband’s work, as we got closer I started to cry. I pulled off and went to his office and messaged him, and asked him to meet me out front. We sat in my car I told him what happened, I slipped back into the pattern of blaming myself. I called myself a bad parent and just cried my eyes out while he held my hand and eventually just hugged me. When I calmed down, he handed me a tissue and said ” You’re not a bad parent, he had a bad day. You can’t blame yourself for his bad day.” Then he stayed with me for a few more minutes until I was no longer crying and I sent him back to work and headed home.
He was right, one bad day, one bad speech session, doesn’t make me a bad parent, giving up would make me a bad parent and I am so not giving up. Even if he acts like this all the time, eventually we will get past this. He hit the terrible three’s emotionally.. I was so not looking forward to this, three-year-old behavior on all my other kids sucked, in the body of a twelve-year-old it will be a lot worse. We will get through this, I just hope it doesn’t last too long because if it does I am going to have to start drinking and posting messaged like “Send wine.. lots and lots of wine please.. ”