Wednesday, June 19, 2019

7 AM Tears

It's barely 7 AM and he's on the floor crying.  Face down in the living room carpet, his little body is shaking with sobs.  I keep calling his name and he occasionally looks up - his face red and his eyes filled with hurt. 

"I'm so sorry, Bug," I keep repeating as I sink into a chair a few feet away.  "I'm so sorry I can't understand you." I begin to cry along with him.

Five minutes ago he was happy and smiling. Five minutes ago I asked him if he wanted something to eat.  I suggest all his favorites and he pushes them away.  Then he points to the kitchen and says... something.  It's a "word" I've never heard before and it doesn't sound like anything. He keeps repeating his request, and I'm just not getting it.  I ask him to show me, he refuses.  The more I guess incorrectly, the most upset he becomes. Finally, he just gives up and cries.

His exasperated and frustrated cries are the worst.  It's not like an "I'm too tired" or "I'm whining because I didn't get my way" cry. These cries instantly increase my blood pressure.  They cause me physical pain because I feel like I'm letting him down.  I mean, if your own MOTHER can't understand you...

It's kind of like I still have a newborn.  You remember that newborn "guessing game": Hungry? Tired?  Dirty diaper?  Gassy?   Only it's much worse, because a three-year-old has so many more possible wants/needs.  And I can't seem to figure it out.

Did you ever see the movie "Mr. Holland's Opus"?  There's this scene where Glenne Headly is explaining why she wants, no NEEDS, to spend money on sign language classes.  It's this emotional monologue that ends with her crying and shouting: "I want to talk to my son! I want to talk to my son!" 

I want my son to talk to ME.

So I just keep trying.  I just keep hoping for more mimicking and more new words.

I'm aching to be bored by an endless monologue about dinosaurs or whatever cartoon he likes. I'm longing for future conversations.   

He's stopped crying.  It's time to try again. 

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