January 21st, 2008

The Very Beginning is a Very Good Place To Start

Part II: And then there was this other thing…

I spent a lot of time at the end of November being really pissed off. When you become a parent, you get told a whole lot to trust your own instincts. But you also get cautioned that your instincts are on par with Woody Allen’s and that you need to tone them down a notch. And then in the end, you find out that your instincts don’t really matter because a bunch of professionals are going to come in to evaluate the situation and tell you, finally, whether you did the wrong thing or the right thing by ignoring those “instincts” that were maybe right or maybe wrong. So I was bitter with pretty much everyone, but I was even more angry at myself for being so helpless as to what to do.

The very worst part of all of it was that I began to see my son’s behaviors as a series of red flags. Where I would have only a short time before seen a nascent musical genius in his tendency to hum slightly out of tune, now I wondered if the humming was too repetitive, too monotone, too consistent. Where I once felt a certain pride in his stubborn streaks, now I saw limitations and obstacles to trying different foods and breaking out of his daily routines. He puts a line of play-doh around a tennis ball and holds it up for me, announcing that he’s “made Saturn”, and I wonder if maybe that’s too weird a thing for a boy his size to do or even know about. The very worst part of all of it was that I started to see him through this hazy cloud of Something Wrong, and it was coloring everything.

It was at this point, around Thanksgiving, that I realized that I was, officially, Late.

Ummm…yeah. That kind of Late.

The kind of late that might quite possibly be due to any number of current stresses: the dissertation that isn’t moving along as quickly as it should, the not eating as well as I probably could, the financial strain of simply living in this city, the myriad of possibilities of whatever in the world might be going on with our most precious boy. It was the kind of Late that doesn’t get paid too much attention in the whirl and clatter of a life that is dealing with Bigger Things. That is, until Late translates into a familiarly queasy feeling at odd moments during the day, and two bright pink lines eclipse those Bigger Things with confirmation of The Big Thing.

That kind of Late

Posted by: Sarah on January 21st, 2008
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