It’s Mother’s Day here in the UK. Now that Thomas has moved up from primary school he didn’t make a card this year. I rather missed the glittery, tissue papery, coloured-outside-the-lines, half-illegible offering. Another sign of the passing away of his younger years. Ah, nostalgia. As he has not yet progressed to going out on his own to buy me a present and card I was given the card my husband bought for him to sign and the present I ordered for myself on Amazon, which was still in its cardboard envelope because neither hubby nor child would ever think of wrapping something in pretty paper to make it personal and special. They are manly men and manly men don’t do pretty paper. The card was lovely though, so well done husband, and Thomas wrote a beautifully loving message. Thomas has a sense of occasion and a flair for the dramatic so he had crafted a message designed to elicit tears of joy (he asked me if I had any tears in my eyes and when I said no he told me that he wanted me to cry with joy so I think I disappointed him a little with my dry-faced response. Ho hum.) Nevertheless I was suitably touched so he was mollified. He forgot to give me the present; husband had to remind him of it about an hour later. It was still on the floor where he’d dropped it in his hurry to get into my bed and observe my reaction while I read the card so he could enjoy creating my tearful joy and basking in my appreciation.
To celebrate Mother’s Day he then insisted that we watch the videos I had recorded of him playing Sega Megadrive and Atari games. Because he’s my son and therefore my greatest achievement and so it’s about me if it’s about him, I guess? Or maybe he thought I’d like to enjoy snuggling in bed with him and watching videos of him because that’s what gives him the most pleasure right now so naturally it would give me the most pleasure too. That’s the autism assumption of a hive mind for you. Either way it amused me to see his enjoyment and it was nice to grab a quick cuddle of my rapidly maturing boy-man so I was happy to tolerate/oblige.
My son has become a Hobbit, apparently.
After half an hour of “enjoying” watching videos I’ve seen several times before, breakfast arrived (thank you husband) and we ate breakfast in bed. That’s me and Thomas, not me and husband. There wasn’t room for poor husband. Tom got crumbs in my bed, of course. Breakfast in bed: the gift that keeps on giving. Then he decided to play a quick game of “conquer Mum Mountain”, comprising of climbing on top of me and covering me in pillows and then squishing me. Not sure how that was a treat for me but okaaaay. I had to cut it short: my back was twinging and he was still hungry and asking for a second round of breakfast. My son has become a Hobbit, apparently. Not only does he have enormous flippers for feet (although they’re not yet hairy but there’s still time) but these days we have first breakfast and a second breakfast entitled “second load”. Followed by lunch and a second load of lunch, then dinner, more dinner (a sausage roll, scotch egg and pork pie chaser) and dessert. I’m now cursed with two menfolk constantly visiting the cupboard and fridge to see what they can graze on. I can’t wait for this growth spurt to end, the continual grocery shopping is quite tiresome. Doesn’t matter how often I go, we seem to run out of something every day because certain people won’t stop eating! I should have asked for a personal grocery shopper to do a week’s shop for me for my Mother’s Day present. Doh, lost opportunity! Next year…..
In truth, I love it all. Of course I do. I love that Thomas still wants to snuggle in bed with me, I love that he is confident in believing that he is the most important aspect of my life. I love that he feels that loved and secure, even though sometimes I yell and say mean things out of frustration. I love that he wants to make me so happy that I cry tears of joy. I love that he drew extra hearts on the front of my card, that hearts inside were not enough. I love that he drew a smiling face in one of the hearts because love is not enough – happy love is even better! I love that my husband graciously allowed Tom and me to be the “Tom and Mum” club and eat breakfast together; he knows that Thomas prefers to allocate his loving attention in discrete packages to one parent at a time except for special occasions. There are the previously agreed, special family times and then there are the everyday, separate Thomas and Mum/Thomas and Dad times. This was Mother’s Day so it was Thomas and Mum time, and husband understood that.
What is normal anyway, except that which you are used to?
I love all the weird ways we have adapted to become our own unique family unit of strange individuals, our very own tribe. I love how we celebrate events our own way and I don’t care that it’s not “normal” and that we’re not “normal”. What is normal anyway, except that which you are used to? This is normal, for us. We are normal, to us. I no longer wish for or worry that we don’t have a mainstream life. This is what we have, this is what we are and so far we’re making it work and we’re (mostly) happy. What more can a mother ask for, on any day?
Even as I type this, Thomas is asking for lunch. He finished his second breakfast about half an hour ago, it is technically lunch time and he swears he’s already digested his breakfast(s) so I guess I’ll go and prepare lunch. I’ll sweep up the crumbs from the table and the floor, mop up the milk and the drink spills and then Tom can make some more crumbs and spills. That’s how he rolls. That’s how we roll.
Happy Mother’s Day to all the mums and female care givers of children with special and/or additional needs. Know that you are special and loved, whether your child tells you or not, and enjoy your day, however you choose to spend it.
Image by Alexandra Koch on Pixabay.com