One of the many difficulties that one of my son's has problems with is the issue of choice. For some reason a choice between A and B is a stop sign for him. Although I have researched this hurdle in detail, I have yet to come up with a satisfactory explanation for the matter. [translation = or satisfactory solution] This is one of our many on going campaigns, helping him to choose. His inability to choose is crippling and the source of a significant percentage of his current meltdown quotient.
He appears and pirourettes before me, coming to a slightly unstable halt. He arranges himself at a jaunty angle. [translation = plus cheesy grin]
“Don't you look smart! Doesn't he look smart mum!” [translation = well attired not clever, nor sarcastic] I look at my son. I bask in the glory of being granted unfettered access. [translation = 5 years ago I was not permitted to look at him. If my eyes dwelled upon him, he would crumple into a heap, scream and curl into the tightest ball. Do you know how difficult it is to try and not look at someone? Surely you've tried, occasionally, not to meet someone in the eye? How difficult was that? Did you find that your eyes kept flitting back, just to check? How difficult would that be if that person was your child? What would you do if your gaze was a form of torture? What kind of monster must you be to invoke such a response? What are you doing wrong? How can you make it better? Why is this so completely incomprehensible? How can you try to understand? Are you blind to the theory of mind? Can you not get inside their head and understand? Who are you? What are you doing to this child?]
“Indeed he does. You are the smartest Birthday boy I've ever seen.” I'm not sure if I'm gloating or excessively happy? His sister smooths the fabric of her frock. [translation = sun dress with matching shorts] My son observes the scene, his father, his brother, his sister and me.
“You too?” he stutters.
“What about me dear?”
“You are gonna, gonna, gonna…..I mean, you're gonna ch ch ch……put on dah frock.”
“Yes, I'm going to change in a minute, put on my best T-shirt.”
He makes a little gasp, takes a step or two in several different directions from a static point, stands to attention, cocks his head on one side, gives his head a little shake before saying “you are gonna, gonna, gonna, put on a T, a T, a T…….a party frock for my party?”
“Oh no, just jeans and my best T-shirt.”
He clamps his lips tightly together, a cartoon of disappointment and disapproval. He is a rigid pole, vertical at a 15% angle. How does he do that without falling over?
I hover, “I don't have any party frocks anyway.”
He's on me like a whippet, “yes you do. I have seen dem. I see dem in your closet. Lots. Lots of frocks.”
“Yes, but I haven't worn those for years…….we lead a different…..well….. the thing is…”
“You go put on dah frock for my birthday party!”
It's more of a command rather than a request.
“Well, I…….you see……I'm not sure……maybe……”
“Party frock!” he nips.
“But I, ..well, but er..”
“No ifs, no buts, no coconuts!” he quotes with aplomb. Where did that come from?
“I don’t know if I can er…”
He steps towards me, takes my hand and looks up to my face, “it's o.k. I can come and help you do dah choosing.”
So if you see a crusty old woman at the equivalent of Macdonald's, wearing a tiara, don't be too quick to judge. [translation = “Rats to the theory” of mind.]
Please excuse crooked feet. They are perfectly co-ordinated with the other end. [translation = crooked teeth]
Post Script [translation = added later after a little early morning reading] We who have young [or teeny tiny] children look to people who have older children so that we can steal their crystal ball for our own benefit. If you’re experiencing a little hurtle and wonder if your kiddie winkie has that empathy then take heart and peek into the life of an “expert.”