Wednesday, January 12, 2011
Snow Day Survival Story
The call came around 8:00 Monday night. It was an automated female voice, sounding very chipper. "Due to the forecast of inclement weather…." I really could not tell you what the rest of the message said because I could not hear it over the hollering coming from Andrew. It was the second snow day in a row, and he was extremely excited. I was happy, too, because the calendar was clear and I had visions of the traditional snow day cinnamon rolls for breakfast, maybe watching a movie or playing a game as a family, and certainly a long winter's nap in the afternoon.
Let me preface the rest of the story by saying that David has a miserable cold. And since David has a miserable cold, I have a miserable cold. We really should have both stayed in bed all day, but for David who sometimes does not stay in bed all night, all day is certainly out of the question.
The day started on the wrong foot, or at least a wet foot as I stepped into the bathroom after David had used it. He had insisted upon privacy and had even locked me out of the room. Just for giggles, he decided to stand to the side of the toilet, which apparently interfered with the normal trajectory. Let's just say that there is a reason I keep Clorox wipes in every bathroom in our house, but in this instance we were way beyond using a wipe or two and into the category of a full blown scrubbing of the floor.
I will not regale you with the gory details of the rest of the morning except to say that most of the behavior (with the exception of the fight over what temperature we should use to cook the customary cinnamon rolls and how many minutes could be on the kitchen timer) was just typical six-year-old bad boy stuff and had nothing to do with the fact that David has autism. Sometimes it is important to make that distinction. He had apparently decided if I was going to be mad at him anyway, he would give me a reason to be mad. And, while he was at it, he would make Andrew mad, too, by periodically turning off his Xbox in the middle of a game.
The day was punctuated by my whole family (Mom, Dad, Sister and Nephew) bringing me lunch. It was billed as a spontaneous snow day gathering, but was really more like an intervention. I think they were trying to preserve what is left of my sanity, or possibly the skin on David's bottom, who knows. Anyway, bless them all, because it worked to break the cycle and David was much calmer in the afternoon.
That night while I was tucking Andrew into bed, I acknowledged that it had been a difficult day with David. And Andrew replied, "Yes it was. FRAZIZZLE." This word, if you can call it that, must have been the closest thing to a swear word that he could think of at the moment and was uttered by the kid who has come home from school surprised that someone has said "the F-bomb" in class and he is not intending it to be short for anything. He actually means that they said the words "F-bomb." Shocking!
I am not sure why I said it because Andrew is usually the one offering encouragement to me by telling me that he wouldn't change anything about David and loves him just the way he is, but on this occasion I said, "Remember that God sent David to us for a reason." And he replied "Could you remind me exactly what that reason is?" I wasn't sure how to respond when Andrew rolled over, closed his eyes to go to sleep and just started laughing.