Wednesday, January 23, 2013

What Time Is It?

What Time Is It?

I often don't know what time it is in my own house.  That is because I live with Matthew, who has a special talent for pushing buttons on the microwave clock to change it.  He also unplugs the digital clock in his room then plugs it in again (I know, unsafe) so he can watch it flash 12:00 over and over.  Recently, he has begun climbing on a shelf in our kitchen to reach the large wall clock so he can rearrange the hands on that.  I look from clock to clock, wondering, what time is it?   While I am fixing the wall clock, he is changing the time on the oven clock!  

Matthew is literally pushing my buttons (on my clocks, phone and on my dwindling patience) every moment of the day.  We try to distract him from doing so by hiding iPhones and iPads in the tallest cabinet in the kitchen - hoping and praying he won't drag a chair over to that cabinet when I am in the bathroom, and double checking, triple checking the digital clock in his bedroom before kissing him good night to make sure that it has the correct time but more importantly that the alarm is not going to go off at midnight because he has pressed THAT button.

It's hard to "recharge" ourselves living in this environment.  I can't recharge my house phone, or leave my cell out to charge while Matthew is home...but most important, it's hard to recharge ME when I live in anticipation of Matthew's next move.  Will he interrupt the washing cycle on our washing machine?  Those buttons are fun to push because they "beep".  While I am in the laundry room, what will he get into?  Let's see, I remembered to hide the phones, the computer is in a good hiding place, I think I have my bases covered.  Nope!  He found the TV remote and is deleting my favorite show, Parenthood, as I exit the laundry room.

As a mom of a child with special needs, I always have to be "on". Remember back when your child was 18 months old and you were exhausted because you had to be "on" all the time - you could not take your eyes off your child because who knew what he would get into next?  What would he put in his mouth?  What would he touch? An electrical outlet?  Poop?  That is what it is like living with Matthew.  No, he is not 18 months old, he is 8.  While his peers are out there skateboarding and learning to snowboard...creating with Legos and going to indoor lacrosse practice, Matthew is...pushing buttons.  

On the bright side, all this button pushing is getting him ready for a future in electronics.  Last week, he found my old laptop hidden away in the mudroom closet.  It had not been used in 2 years.  He asked if he could use it.  Why not, I thought?  I plugged it in, got it charging and discovered there was no icon for the Internet, so I told him it was just for typing words.  Within 20 seconds he said, "Look, Mommy, I'm on do I get to Starfall from here?"  (his favorite website).  

If you met Matthew for the first time, he would engage you with his warm smile and ask you his repertoire of questions.  While you answered him, he would reach in your pocket for your phone or keys and in a split second, he would delete an app or push the panic button on your car keys.  Watch out, next time he might change your clock somehow and you won't know what time it is!

1 comment:

  1. I'm smiling totally picturing Matthew re-programming my phone...with a smile on his face while he does it!! :) johanna