Game Faces


Sometimes it seems we have to hide our emotions to give the outcomes we desire a chance.  I feel like I hide evermore often of late.
It would seem taking out our kids’ home therapists at a time they seem most in need was not a strong enough head wind.  After talking with the director of the organization providing the services, he agreed to continue services for two more weeks for the kids to transition to their new therapist.  He assured me, as the other supervisor had, this was no reduction in services.  However, when Saturday came, we found out the two therapists are now one who will be working with both kids at the same time.  I have to admit I am curious how this will work as A withdraws and O is overly expressive of his emotions.  I am curious yet apprehensive how one therapist will replace the services of two working with both of them at the same time.  We have to act as if this is normal and were always our plan for our kids to transfer their trust to the new therapist and therapy plan.  To do otherwise would rob them of the sense of safety they had with their old therapists. 
I tried to point out to the director this sense of safety, familiarity and receptiveness was the “true” service provided, and no new therapist would be equal even if the hours spent are.  Trust is gained in experiences together not numbers of hours to be spent in future weeks.  The current plan is not equal now when it is needed, but we pretend.  We will continue to do so in the face of O not sleeping through the night again.  We will pretend in spite of evidence from A picking at her hands until they bleed to… her giving up on schoolwork for the first time to… her increasing reluctance to take medications.  It is time for the parental game face.
I know this coming week will be hard.  This coming weekend, our neighbors will have moved, not to be seen for the next 2 years outside of Skype.  My wife loses her best friend and escape hatch for when we drive her crazy.  She loses out and has to stay at least close to neutral so our kids and theirs do not react too much to the change.  J’s game face is usually good for the kids, but the hurt leaks out in dozens of complaints.  
(Continued on Next Page)

With J fighting to keep an even keel for the kids this week,   I am hoping to achieve a rate of five complaints for every compliment this week from the family.  If so, I hope my game face holds because expecting otherwise is probably unrealistic.  It is hard to watch family suffer.  Therefore, my increase in stress and MS symptoms ranging from greater tiredness to increased stiffness to more pain to vision issues etc. will just have to wait.  After all, who would take me seriously if I said I feel like I need more sleep this week, so I should up my sleep from five and a half hours a night to six or even seven?  I would not, but the difference is noticeable to me in most everything I do.  Being tired bleeds through to my other symptoms. When training for sports, I always believed what I could do when tired was truest test of my abilities.  So I guess this week is just a better test of abilities true and bluffed.  The problem is my game face often indicates when I have no game left with which to play.
On the cool side, J took A and O to Great Wolf Lodge over the weekend with the neighbors for a last “Hoorah!”  They all got rocks to use as “worry rocks.”  The idea is to carry them around through the day and rub them when they feel anxiety.  They seem smooth now, but I bet they will be smoother after our family finishes with them.
On the funny side, I am beginning to think ADD is in our environment at home.  As I was walking the dogs last night, our oldest dog went to poop.  As she assumed the position, a dog barked, and Kimba started to run towards it.  As she took two steps, she realized she hadn’t covered up the poop (which never had a chance to get out), so she started scratching at the grass.  Scratching at the grass evidently made her realize she needed to poop so she assumed the position until she smelled something and started to chase.  Of course she only made it another two steps before the habitual covering routine began which made her realize she needed…The whole routine continued for five rounds before it was my laughter stopping her.  We walked a little further till she remembered the urge which began the sequence.  This time she was uninterrupted.
Share