Wednesday, January 26, 2011

So this is what it feels like....

to have patience and perseverance feels AWESOME! 

In an effort to push L1 out of his comfort zone and give him some new experiences, I signed him (and L2) up for a homeschool PE class at the Y.  I knew L2 would love it...running....playing games...making new friends...what's not to love, right?  L1 I knew would love it, not so would be new...loud...confusing....not his idea....not under his control....he would have to do things other kids and a teacher wanted him to do.  These things are not exactly his strong suit.  But in addition to being good for him physically, I really wanted him to do this to challenge him in all those other areas.

Let me just say, it has been really, really not good rough.   Most days he would do the warm up stretches and some running then, fall apart into a pile of tears and sit on the sidelines while the games were going on.  I will give him credit though....he really did try at first...the first time they played dodge ball....he was right out there trying his hardest to figure out what in the heck was going on...but being handicapped in the area of picking up social cues does not help one in the game of dodge guess wrong and you get pounded in the head with the ball.  And that is exactly what happened the first game he played really, i can't blame him much for not wanting to play anymore.

The class moved on to kickball...also hard on the socially challenged...think about how difficult it is to figure out what all those people are doing running around the bases...when do you take the chance and run for the next base?  When do you stay put?   There are just a lot of variables to take in even for the typical kid...much less one who finds it hard to read what other people are doing.  His coaches, bless their hearts, have given him lots of help and also learned when to back off and just let him observe....the observing part is very important for him to be able to do. 

So for the past 4 months since we started in September, 2 days a week he has emerged from the gym with the wrath of a caged animal...yelling at me...hitting me...throwing drinks and shoes in the car....and most days taking at least 2 hours to calm down enough once we make it home to come close to finishing his school work for the day.  Many days I would cry along with him.  I almost let him quit...but with every prayer I still felt like i couldn't let him give up....was physical education really that important to me?, but teaching him to deal with things that are frustrating is that important to me.   If I was going to take (most of) those challenges out of his school day by homeschooling, then he surely needs to figure out how to deal with it in other places.

We have talked about it a lot...prayed about it a lot...done role playing about self control.....even though it broke my heart to punish him for behavior that most of the time i was not sure he could control...i did it..."no, you are not allowed to hit momma, and if you do there will be punishment".....

This week has been it has been AMAZING!  He is participating more....but most importantly, there is no crying in the gym....he is leaving throwing anything...he is (i am almost scared to say it) calm when we really feels like an amazing triumph, and i am surely letting him know how proud his momma is!

My heart's been stolen.....