Forward Momentum

 So: Nora did send the pictures, and late as they were, it was good to get them. She then kept our Skype date on Sunday morning—and halfway through it, Cricket said “I’m going to see you guys soon!”

Nora responded with “Yeah, in two months! Less than two months, now.” So I guess they’re seriously planning on coming. I mean, they wouldn’t tell Cricket about it if it wasn’t going to happen—right? When Cricket said that he’d see us, I got really upset—upset isn’t quite the right word. There is probably a German word that means worried and excited and prepared to be disappointed and sad about the past and glad at the same time.

Today, then, I sent Nora a message:

Hi Nora!

 So the last time Joey and Cricket were together, it was pretty rough; this time, I would like for Joey’s behavioral therapist to be there to help him when the boys first meet up. She’d just hang out for a couple of hours and assist Joey. It is obviously really early to have concrete plans yet, but I’d need to get her a time within the next couple of weeks: Are you guys able to make a plan with us as to when and where we’ll first meet up?

 I hope you and Cricket are doing well. It was great to see you guys on Sunday! The only real news here is that I got my driver’s license on Monday. =) Joey has discovered the joys of (toe)nail polish, and he calls Kit “bey bey”; Kit calls Joey “budda.”

 Best,

Susie

See, now I’m starting to plan. If they’re really coming, then I want to do a good job; I hope that message doesn’t come across as too pushy or blunt (too late now!), but after talking with Joey’s behavioral therapist, I am pretty convinced that having her with him would help. At last year’s visit, part of the problem was definitely Cricket: he bullied and hit Joey. But Joey didn’t have the skills to deal with Cricket appropriately, and still doesn’t, and while mostly it is my job to help him, since I will already be overwhelmed and didn’t do a stellar job last time. . . .

The idea occurred to me after this behavioral therapist, Miss Krista, talked about having taken one of her clients to the movies on a Saturday. This is something that they do, as I was told in my ABA orientation; they aren’t babysitters, and parents need to be present and involved, but they can help facilitate special events sometimes. And this is a pretty fraught, extremely stressful event. Of course, if this works out, I will have to tell Krista ahead of time exactly who our visitors are—I am more or less entirely closeted in my day-to-day life—as in my initial request, I just described them as friends with a small child whose visits are tense and difficult. But that would be totally worth it if it would help my Joey Bean. I keep remembering him at the last visit, crying whenever he could see Cricket, and finally searching the house to make sure that he was gone. I can’t let it be that bad again.

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6 thoughts on “Forward Momentum

  1. Wow. You’re amazing. What a good idea and great planning! Also, your conjecture that “there is probably a German word that means worried and excited and prepared to be disappointed and sad about the past and glad at the same time” made me laugh out loud. Too true.

  2. Out of curiosity, had you had any conversations with Nora about the difficulties of the last visit? Does she understand it was hard on Joey? If that had happened then this email you sent seems perfect, if that conversation hadn’t happened I could see it feeling a little hard to read for her, but in general your intentions come across very clearly – you are trying to do everything your power to build the relationship between Cricket, Joey, and Kit – and that should be what all of you are working for. Anyways, I’m excited that this is looking up for you.

  3. I’m so happy you got to Skype, and that would be awesome if they would visit! Great idea to have Joey’s therapist there! I will be curious to see how Kip and Cricket hit it off – great I bet!

  4. I think this is such a great plan and I love that it takes some of the pressure off you so you can focus on Cricket rather than just managing Joey’s experience. This seems like a great way to handle it, and I suspect a therapist who does home visits and intervention with little kids will have seen a whole lot of different family setups and won’t be judgmental.

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