February 01, 2010

It Shouldn't Be So Hard

Y'all have been reading me long enough to know that I'm not one of these helicopter Moms who can't let their kids do their thing, be their person, hovering, pushing, living vicariously through their offspring.

Good Lord if this thing with Bones isn't about to send me around the damn bend.

Y'all have read about him enough to know that he's not a round peg child. What bugs the crap out of me is there are a TON of kids that are not round pegs and our society seems hell bent on sanding down all their edges, turning them into round pegs and making them fit, "DAMMIT!", into that hole.

At all costs.

Every child has to sit. Every child has to learn the same way. Every child has to...

And it pisses me off. Until I had a child like Bones, I never realized what a disservice we do to our children who think a little differently.

And let me tell you something folks, it's the kids that think a little differently that we need to think a little differently as adults... for they will be the ones to see things the rest of us round pegs don't frickin' see.

Trust me.

And as bat crap crazy as he makes me, it is seeing the world through his eyes that I realize, my world was black, white and gray before him... and he adds color.

Not only did I call the school first thing, get Bones an appointment with our pediatrician, and get a letter stating he needs to postpone as I was told to do... instead of FAXing it there, I frickin' DROVE THERE and hand delivered it, met with someone, and rescheduled for 2:00 on Saturday, the absolute last audition time possible.

If he doesn't audition then, it's not happening.

And although I was told that the voice teachers can tell if a child can sing, Bones sick is not the same as Bones well, and his voice teacher has told me repeatedly, that although Bones can sing, it is the whole package that will sell him. She said he sparkles and has something inside him that people want to be around.

Well, some people. Don't ask his 4th grade teacher. That wasn't the case. May he rot.

So he's on a cough suppressant and we have myriad things we are doing to get him ready for Saturday.

I'm watching this thinking, "NO. This is not my life. What am I becoming?"

My girlfriend Leigh (commenting in the previous post) and I were discussing this at Audition sign ups. She and I have very similar personalities, both mothers of three boys. We both find ourselves doing things as women/mothers, that never in a million years would we have believed 20 years ago if you'd been a soothsayer and led us down this path.

Boy Moms are just a different breed and if we're not born that way, we're cast into it via fire.

We were laughing in the auditorium about how we were trying to remain so calm for our kids, but inside we're screaming to make this work. This school... we're looking at with so much hope.

It's making me a freakin' basket case. I found myself in the pouring rain today, driving to the school, leaving Bones in the car so he'd not make them sick (dock points for bringing sickness into a school), and as I walked in I realized... holy crap. I was in my run around, dash to the pediatrician clothes.

I was in black shorts, a purple sweatshirt from HIGH SCHOOL (my sister is loving that one... I'm 44), and my eldest boy's checkered Vans. I was the complete multi-generational fashion disaster.

Bonus for me, I was wearing make up and and my hair was clipped up instead of looking like I'd rolled out from under a couch.

Bones had his theater audition two weeks ago. It went OK. I'm sure he passed it, but I don't think he'd have gotten in with theater. He readily admitted he did not click with the judges.

That's the deal with theater... it is so subjective even at this age, whereas for voice it is more of a 'can he keep the pitch, repeat a note, sing a song?'.

And as I put in the comments to Leigh, it was an absolute sea of children from every walk of life.

And there were little girls stretching for dance, all of their hair in little buns if not cut short, and some of them so limber you could not help but stare as their bodies twisted in ways that my body NEVER twisted and that I feel certain they were not designed to bend to.

There were kids with drum sets, guitars and every other instrument of size imaginable. There were amazing projects for the kids doing Communication. I have no idea what these structures were, some of them, but it had Bones and I talking.

Then of course there was the vast animation and chatter that can of course be attributed to kids in general, but I feel certain belonged to a lot of the theater kids for when the theater kids left, the room got a bit... quieter.

I sat in the back of the room with my logic book working puzzles trying not to overthink the entire thing when a Mom I knew back when Bones was two found me and we spoke for the next hour about our bleak options if our kids don't get in.

I damn near have a stroke every time I think of his not getting in. And I know that's how 75% of the other parents feel as well.

And I find myself once again on a planet I am unfamiliar with as I talk to my girlfriend about his voice, her husband being a voice specialist. I'm a boy Mom. Bones likes to play airsoft guns with his brothers, he loves playing football in the rain because then his brothers drop the ball and he has a chance, he plays shoot 'em up video games, and on any given day is nearly hanging from my proverbial rafters.

And I'm worried about how to take care of his voice for an audition? I'm actually on the verge of a meltdown over this? Really? ME?

It just needs to be over so we can move on because we all know it's not really the audition throwing me over the edge but the fact if he doesn't get in... my options are so... bleak and damaging to him.

And I promise I will never look back on any of this and laugh. None of this will ever be funny.


Bones waiting.jpg
Bones waiting for me today, not looking too sick, but sounding like crap.

OK. Maybe the picture is funny.

A little.

Posted by Boudicca at February 1, 2010 01:36 PM

I am hearing you loud and clear with this one...I lie in bed nightly and PRAY I am doing the right thing....heck I am pushing folks this way, that way trying to veer through the normal maze with the not normal kid....

Criminey people BEND BEND...these kiddos have a lot to offer

They are making us wear a sweater for pants you know

Posted by: AWTM at February 1, 2010 11:48 PM

I had (I'm going to spell it wrong, sorry) laryngitis the week before my big audition for the international choir. 50 spots and over 500 folks. No voice. None. Nada.

Meds and rest.....and then (not to be done on a regular basis) choliseptic (wrong spelling again) spray 15 mins before my turn.

Numbs the throat and takes away the "roughness". Done on a regular basis does damage because you can't FEEL what you're doing to your vocal chords. But for something like this? Well, it worked.

I'm just sayin'......

(crossing fingers and saying prayers)

Posted by: Tammi at February 2, 2010 08:53 AM

Your post has brought back way too many memories from pulling my son through the school system. I have to say I'm sitting here feeling sick for you.

No, it never will be funny. Years from now when Bones has grown up and is making his way in the world (something I have no doubt he will do well with because you and your husband will give him everything you can), you will hear another parent with a similar story and your stomach will clench and you'll feel that twist for them because you know what they are going through.

I'm praying for you - that it all works. Praying hard.

Posted by: Teresa at February 2, 2010 10:56 AM

Nope, not funny. Yup - schools are not only doing a disservice to the kids, they are doing a disservice to society as a whole - these creative minds are our future hope! No kidding, look up how many dyslexic or "ADHD" kids have become super successful, important adults.

But the photo is priceless :)

Fingers crossed, prayers sent - hope hope hope.

Posted by: patti at February 2, 2010 11:09 AM

I hope he is feeling better soon, Bou, and that he passed the audition!

Posted by: PeggyU at February 2, 2010 12:37 PM

Has he been watching VH1?


Posted by: Harvey at February 6, 2010 03:07 PM

You should read The Speed of Dark by Elizabeth Moon. While it is the story of an autistic adult, not that of someone with ADHD, it's written with a unique perspective and empathy that reinforces the idea that, as you eloquently put it, "...the kids that think a little differently that we need to think a little differently as adults... for they will be the ones to see things the rest of us round pegs don't frickin' see."

Posted by: Elisson at February 6, 2010 03:57 PM