Christmas Cat Gifts–Empathy

bw cat christmas lower resolution


Bookmark and Share

Grumpy is as grumpy does

 


I drink coffee through as straw as instructed by the Dental Devils and sulk. Another visit to the dentist brings more bad news. Ten months after surgery we are still struggling. I am sorely tempted to clamp a bag of espresso to my hip and drink it intravenously, just to avoid all possible current and future mouth issues. However, I don't want to tempt fate. It seems only a tiny step until I'll be old enough to wear a colostomy bag instead, an area of fashion as yet untouched by Calvin Klein.

The word 'dentist' and all derivatives have been banned from the household. I refuse to allow my children to pick up negative vibes. They will have American attitudes towards dentistry if it kills me. Spouse and I will not whisper about the subject either, because our offspring have more finely attenuated hearing that the average owl. They absorb our body language and the instinctive shivers that pass between us. Their father's facial expression needs no interpretation. When he clamps his hands over his mouth and screws up his eyes, all three small people wince in response.

I tried so hard to be jolly with the new pharmacist but we do not appear to enjoy the same sense of humour. This is probably just as well for other patients patronizing this establishment.

I toss back another couple of antibiotics as instructed by the dentist. This is a preamble to another fishing expedition for various assorted hardware, to include but not limited to, loose screws and lumps of cement. I am sadly disappointed with the dental community, not for their lack of dentistry skills but for their complete failure to comprehend Elephant jokes. What manner of medical professional is unfamiliar with such hilarity? Are they all childless or are they just foreign?
“Don't worry,” he soothed, as I submitted to yet another x-ray to ensure that I am totally radioactive, if not magnetic.
“So you're just looking for just those two things then?” I ask, an unnecessarily.
“Yes.”
“Just allow ten days for the infection to calm down?”
“That's right. Everything will be just fine.”

For two pins I would just curl up under the desk and admit defeat. Take up permanent residence. In fact I would, but they don’t have an espresso machine.
“I'm sure we'll find whatever they are, when we open you up. Very tiny.” I should probably ask an intelligent question, or maybe two? I should probably ask an intelligent medically question, but I can’t think of any, apart from ‘does it hurt?’ but I already know the answer. I am heartily sick of being the tiniest percentage of dental patients, I want a different spot on the bell curve.
“I didn't do anything wrong, it's just bad luck?” I beg.
“Good luck that we found it just in time!” It doesn't feel lucky to me.
“Right. Let's hope you just find those two then, and not any elephants?” I offer, as a means of dispersing the tension, although it may only be my own. The radiologist and the surgeon exchange meaningful glances. The radiologist steps closer. She has more qualifications after her name than would fit on the average business class envelope. She smiles to expose her birthright, a perfect line of pearly enamel tombstones. “You know,” she says tapping the x-ray, “an elephant would show up on this.” I examine her face to locate a smirk, spot a wink or some other tiny clue that we are on the same wavelength, as I don't want to keep making the same mistake over and over again. Blank. I give up. I go home.

What is commonly referred to as 'dry mouth' in the States, would more accurately be described as glue mouth. I pout at my son as he demonstrates his vastly superior lip closure, him of the speech delayed camp.
“You are dah suck again?”
“I am.”
“I am dah suck too. See?” he slurps, just to show off. “You can be do dat too?” he taunts. I temper my reply, “well no actually. As it happens I'm having a hard time getting to the bottom of the mug.” I try and remove the sneary tone from my voice.
“Ooo, you are dah dribble.” I dab my chin and demonstrate my perfect mastery of etiquette and table manners.
“Ooo, not dah mouth. Dah mouth is being clean.” I examine the napkin. It is clean, not a coffee stain of dampness. I suppress swear words and dash off to the mirror in the bathroom because my nose is still numb and lies to me frequently. Footfalls follow me at high speed. Oh for a bit of privacy! I peer into the mirror. My son inserts himself between me and the mirror, so that we can both look at my reflection, although not admiringly. Oh the joy of joint attention!
“See! You are dah snot!” I grab a handful of toilet paper and dab gently, as nerve endings are thoroughly unreliable around here.
“Don be sad.”
“I'm not sad,” I respond far to quickly and in the wrong tone.
“Soon you are not dah snot. Soon you are dah big sucker.”
Whilst it sounds like an insult, it’s really a rallying cry, a supportive gesture. Yet another demonstration of the heartless, soulless autism that we know and love so well. Rats to the “Theory of Mind.”

Ain't that the truth.


Bookmark and Share

Drones – message received and understood

A chum of mine, [translation = British] refers to her daily life with her autistic child as 'Groundhog days.' This refers to the film where the actor repeats the same day of his life, again and again without apparent end. Parents of young children often repeat the same life lessons until they are acquired, but for autistic children the process may take longer.

Last summer one of my boys had a chance encounter with a bee. The bee and my son were outside the house, in the garden at the time. [ translation = a rare event, now sadly, all the more rare as a consequence] The bee did not attack him. As my son floated in the pool so did the bee. The bee was in it's last death throes when they happened to come in contact and it stung him. My usually silent son, made known his condition. Fortunately he removed himself from the pool prior to his quite reasonable meltdown. [translation = otherwise he and the bee might have come to the same untimely end]

He survived, the bee did not.

Thereafter, again quite reasonably, all insect life became untrustworthy. [translation = a source of fear] Although he has endured many hours of vision therapy, his ability to accurately determine what something 'is' varies. [translation = if in doubt, stay well away] Our daily meltdown count was still quite high a year ago. This additional trigger, began to make life unbearable. [translation = Summer produces a higher incidence of fast and slow moving creepy crawlies and flying insects]

Something had to be done.

Sometimes, logic doesn't work. Fortunately for me, one of my sons is keen on rules. [translation = reflects the need to place order and form on chaos] In such situations, the best thing to do is lie. I highly recommend it, especially if you have already used up ALL the usual arguments in your favour.

……….. …… …. .. .

“BEE!!! BEE!!!BEE!!!”
“Yes, it is. Tiny bee, big you. Who is most scared?”
“ME! Bee! Bee! Bee!”
“Do you know that there is a rule about bees?”
“Rule?” Aha! The magic word. Now what is the rule? Think of a rule! A helpful rule. The right rule. A rule that will work and not backfire and make the situation worse!
“Yes. The rule is……..you know how a bee dies after it's stung you?”
“Yes.”
“That's one rule. But the other rule is….. that……every person in the world is only allowed to be stung once per lifetime.”
“That is rule?”
“Indeed it is. Everyone knows that rule. I have been stung, Daddy has been stung and now you have been stung, so you will never be stung again. Otherwise it wouldn't be fair. Would it?”
“Stung is dah same as sting?”
“Correct! Good thinking!”
He looks at his sister and brother, “they are sting, er stung…er…stunged?”
“No.”
“It their turn sting?”
Oh dear! I dither, hoping that other small people are out of earshot.

Overall, he is dubious, but placated. Bee phobia diminishes considerably. [translation = over time and with the changing seasons]

We move forward a year to a day when a wholesome looking young lad and his crew come to deliver my replacement sofa. Spring has sprung and the Spearmint bush in the front garden is a glorious mound of white spiked blooms. If you look more closely or open your ears, it is easy to note that there may be as many as a hundred bees labouring away. Mr. Wholesome is engaged with the removal of several miles of plastic wrap from the furniture.

My son observes him from the front door, half in and half out. [translation = keen to make a new friend, fearful of an old enemy] Mr. Wholesome's attention is drawn to the buzzing noise. His eyes are of additional assistance and track across to pin point the location of the sound. At the moment that his brain registers the bees, his body ignites as he stumbles back to pin himself to the white picket fence. [translation = the effect of a burning bush] My son reacts also and flees, for a second. [translation = a perfect reflex to perceived danger] This is the same child who walked into walls that he didn't notice, would not reconise me if I took my glasses off or wore anything other than blue jeans and a white t-shirt, and has a high pain threshold.

His better nature catches up with him. He gallops over to Mr. Six Foot Two, cowering but not impaled near the fence. “It's o.k., it's o.k., it's o.k., don't be worrying, they are not be harming you!” As he says these words he approaches Mr. Wholesome on soft feet. [translation = the same way come close to an injured animal] “It's alright now, I'm here, I'm here, I'm here,” says Master Four Foot One. Mr. Wholesome's gaze flicks between the bush and the boy as he wraps his arms around himself. His biceps pump and flinch, whilst his knees quake. “You can be dah brave one now. Look at you. Tiny bee, big you!” [translation = with appropriate hand gestures to assist a potential visual learner]

Related Posts with Thumbnails

Bookmark and Share