Twiddling with the ledger

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SOOC and Smiley Saturday

They all have some version of it, the twiddle syndrome. It is of course extremely annoying. However, I thought I should better detail this particular twiddle because whist it is terribly irritating, one day it may not be there any more. Elimination or extinguishing the behaviour, would be designated as progress, but I will also miss it in some strange way that I don't really understand.

In his book “Look me in the Eye,” “John Elder Robinson” details many skills, talents and abilities that he experienced as a child, which were later displaced by other skills, such that the former intuitive capabilities were no longer available to him. It makes me hopeful, but also cautious.

In our house, like many houses with children, many objects are on the floor. Not just furniture and toys but other things. Within minutes of their wakefulness a whole slew of things hit the floor such as cushions, sofa cushions, anything that happened to be on either. This means that the floor space becomes an obstacle course in seconds. This wouldn't be a problem per se, but my children also have difficulty navigating their space and frequently trip over things that aren't even there. The obstacle course makes the task of moving from A to B even more hazardous.

My eldest son, speech delay aside, is now far more willing to communicate with us verbally and voluntarily. It is at first light that he is most willing to talk. He talks primarily about Pokemon. Through the haze of dawn he chats. As he chats his feet propel him over a radius of approximately three yards in constant movement. As he moves, his feet come into contact with an object. The object sticks to his feet like a magnet, even if it is made of plastic or cloth or paper. The object moves similarly to a ball that is being dribbled by an expert soccer player, but in slow motion. As the object tumbles between his feet, clenched by toes and glued from one ankle to another, the words flow from his mouth with a sweet breathy expression. It is very hard to concentrate on the words, as my eyes are distracted by the object. It is quite mesmerizing.

I already know how to correct this. I need to take him by the shoulders to orientate him towards me, his audience, and remove the distracter. Experience tells me that if I ground him; 'stand still while your talking!' and remove the object, his words will dry up, the smiling expression faulter, so I refrain, and just listen. People are unlikely to listen to a spinning speaker but somehow I suspect that given time, he will adjust himself, as he grows older and more things fall into place.

These days it's also reciprocal, not just a monologue as he asks me pertinent questions about my own preferences, questions that I am supposed to answer. As I stumble for an answer, whilst the object tumbles, he is patient with me, as my brain searches for the right words. I'm sure my annoyance and confusion is well disguised. As I gape like a fish, my mind struggles with word retrieval. He steps across to me to pause and place an index finger on my chin, fix me with soft brown eyes, “it's o.k. mom, I know that “you are being tired,” he beams, “dere you go!” he puts the two foot, Halloween spider from his feet into my hands and scampers off.

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