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This Boy, My Ears, That Song

Oh, this boy.  This boy takes us right up to the edge of sanity and tries to delicately tip us over that edge, into the abyss.

The incessant repeating of movie and TV dialogue started a few weeks ago.  It is a persistent, relentless hum in the background.

Connor:  (speaking in a low tone) “YOU are a child’s PLAYthing.” (Toy Story)

Me:  “Please stop repeating, honey.”

Connor:  “Okay.”

30 seconds later…

Connor:  “The pet shop, where is it?  Where is the pet shop?  No, I said, where is the pet shop?” (from Upside Down Show)

Me:  “Sweetheart, you’re driving mommy crazy, please stop repeating.”

Connor:  “Okay.”

This scenario is repeated over and over, throughout the day.  He just can’t seem to stop himself.  But it’s more than that.  There is also the incessant arguing and debating.  We went out to lunch today, because there was a power outage in the neighborhood.  Since Connor has been getting up very early, and not sleeping well, we told him he would need to lay down and rest when we got home.

Connor:  “But I don’t feel like I need to rest.”

Me:  “But I feel like you do, and you are going to have some quiet time, and there will be no arguing.”

Connor:  “Okay.”

30 seconds later…

Connor:  “It sure is bright today.  I think it’s too bright to lay down and rest.”

Me:  “We’re not talking about this anymore.”

Connor:  “Okay.”

30 seconds later…

Connor:  “I sure hope the power is back on.  If the power’s not on, I don’t think I can lay down for a rest.”

Me:  “We’re not talking about this anymore.”

Connor:  “Okay.”

And on, and on, and on it went.  I’m not making this stuff up, either.  At the end of kindergarten, they have an awards ceremony where the kids get a certificate for best attendance, most helpful, yadda yadda.  Connor got a certificate too.  Want to see it???

Our little politician.

Yep, “negotiator” is a nice way of saying “most persistent, most stubborn, most argumentative little jackal that ever graced our hallways.”

This boy, this never-ending stream of repetitive questions, demands, arguments and dialogue is so very much like me, it’s maddening.  I used to have a bumper sticker on my car when I was 17 that said “Question Authority.”  Damn it, I think I’ve doomed myself.

And after a long day, when I feel like I’m just about ready to strangle him, or take off with a friend on a desperate, edge-of-sanity, Thelma and Louise road trip, it all changes.

He was sent to the bathroom to get his clothes off and turn on the bath water to get his bath ready.  I heard the singing, but paid no attention, because we live with a constant background of Connor noise.  I went in to check on his progress.  There he was, naked, filling the tub with water, and picking out bathtub toys and plopping them into the water.  He was singing:

“It’s gonna be the perfect life,

This time, we’re gonna jump up high,

I’m gonna give all my secrets away.

I stood in the doorway, enjoying the moment, and the improvised lyrics to One Republic’s ‘Secrets’.  He turned around, with a startled and embarrassed smile.

Connor:  “What?”

Me:  “You’re adorable.”

Connor:  “It’s a love song, it’s for you.”

This boy.  I will never, ever give up fighting for this boy.



About Flannery

Kid, husband, dogs, my mother, full-time job, maximum stress, minimal relaxation...sooner or later I had to vent. AND we moved from California to Texas. I could start a whole other blog about that.

22 responses »

  1. It the moments like those we’re fighting for, isn’t it? Well done. Well done!

    And if you ever do that road trip I’m the one that sleeps with Brad, that’s all I’m sayin. I forget if it was Thelma or Louise but I get Brad!

    Now I’m going to say this and then run like hell–I tagged you in a meme. Consider it tradition, me passing a meme to you…..

  2. That was a beautiful story! I think that you should send your son to Washington D.C., so he can straighten things out up there!

  3. I love that. Thanks for sharing that moment. It’s a reminder I needed today!

  4. Oh, that is so sweet. I think that’s pretty much why God makes kids and puppies cute…so we’ll keep having them. LOVE the best negotiator award. Keep that baby packed up, some of the traits we find “difficult” in our children now, will help them to be very successful adults!

    Wish my kid would script that Toy Story line, instead he says, “Hey you kids, get outta my butt”, from Toy Story 3. That’s my boy.

  5. I didn’t comment here right away because I was trying to think of something nice and meaningful to say without sounding like a total sap. But I can’t. Despite all my profanity and bluster, I am a big wussy crybaby, and you made me blubber with this one.

    There. Now you know.

    And I had the same bumper sticker.

  6. I am heartbroken today because in this first week, my baby has poked kids with a pencil, hit a kid in the face, and today… today he bit another kid. He’s in there now, singing his favorite theme songs and making crashing noises with his fingers because “when we hurt friends, we don’t get to play with toys,” so of course the fingers are filling in for whatever action figure is saving the world in his imagination. I want to cry myself out right now, but what I’m going to do instead is make some fish sticks and pasta, and brace myself for bath night. You’re bookmarked now, k?

    • @Fran I feel your pain, I really, really do. All we can do is hope that with time, maturity, and consistency they eventually grow out of this. I can’t imagine dealing with this when they’re 12 or 14. Thanks for stopping by, it’s always nice to connect with someone else that is dealing with the same challenges. We are not alone!!

      • Other than the biting, it sounds like a typical day in junior high with “normal” kids. The difference is that your kid has a semi-legitimate, might not know better, reason for his behavior, other than just being mean or bored or what have you. All in all, I’d probably feel safer sitting next to your kid than certain childhood acquaintances.

        There were times in elementary school when kids were so blase about stabbing each other with pencils, that they would show off all the little pencil lead bits permanently stuck in their bodies under the skin. (Although white blood cells did finally break them down over the next few years.) This of course led to people stabbing themselves with pencils.

  7. BTW Flannery, they did the same thing to J on the first day. Completely different teacher than what they said he’d have at the IEP meeting in May. So I went all summer, saying “isn’t it great you will get this teacher! You already know her from Creativity Club, so I know you’ll have a lot of fun!” Aaaand, no. Who we got was a very nice lady who used to teach sixth grade but now she wants to teach first grade. So she’s adjusting, and we’re adjusting, which you know is SO much fun for an Aspie family. I like the teacher, but I’m worried about what it means for Jacob that she doesn’t have her feet completely under her. (HOW DO THEY NOT KNOW THIS IS DEVASTATING?) Gah. Anyway. We suck it up and drive on, right?

  8. That is some gooey sweetness! Nicely done, Connor. If he needs a running mate in the future, I know a certain four-year-old who has mastered the art of using ABA therapy on her parents. They’d make quite the ticket.

    Also, if there’s room in that car with Thelma and Louise, I sure could use a “lift”.

  9. It’s funny how, after a day of being driven almost to Crazyville, they have these great moments that make you realize it’s all worth it. (Found you through Confessions of an Asperger’s Mom)

  10. Oh my, you had me in peals of laughter by the picture of the certificate. That’s genius. I loved this, thank you!

  11. You just brought me to teary-eyes….My son does SO many of these same things…both the things that bring me to the very edge of my coping ability (arguing, repetitive EVERYTHING–my son got the EXACT SAME “negotiator” certificate in 1st grade!) and then the stunning, creative things (making up both words and music for songs and singing them at the top of his lungs in the shower) that just stop me in my tracks. Thank you so MUCH (sorry for all the caps, but I’m excitable) for writing this. I am a single parent of a 10 year old boy with Aspgerger’s/ADHD/Anxiety, and I really needed this today.

  12. Of all people!! I come back and you’re sapping it up?! Why must you make me tear up? Give Connor a great big smooch because that is just too adorable! T is on that same repetition kick now and I’m going slightly nuttier than usual… (I relate).

    You must keep that certificate because I’m sorry to tell you but Connor will end up a lawyer, you know…

  13. Oh, man. My heart…it’s melting! God, that was beautiful. Isn’t it amazing how when we are just about to the end of our rope, our kiddos will do something so incredibly, purely beautiful that makes us fall head over heels back in love with them. Thanks for sharing! 😉

  14. I LOVE LOVE LOVE that certificate! I certainly hope you framed it! How great is that? And yes I do believe that the cute little remarks that make us go “AWWWW” or roll on the floor laughing are there to keep us sane and from not driving off the cliff. (Which by the way i am so ready to hop in that car with you as well.) The other day I caught Jay reading the want ads. When I asked what he was doing he said, “Seeing if anyone is in need of an Evil Genius!” And there you have it. the reason why I keep going on!


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