Sometimes, hes just a kid. Without anything else attached. Without fancy words or things that arent understood unless you have a doctors degree, and are fluent in the medical dictionary. Sometimes, hes just a boy. And sometimes, I think, in the mess of trying to figure out what label to put on what problem, that gets overlooked. Sometimes it seems the diagnosis gets more emphasis than the kid. Or in this case it does.
I spent so much of my time trying to understand the words that had been handed over with Josh, and his name became a foreign word. I didn’t know what he liked, or didn’t like. Or did or didn’t do. I knew that he couldn’t do this because of that. And that because he couldn’t do this because of that, it meant he had this, but just because he had this, didn’t mean it was limited to just this, it could be part of that too. And if that sounds confusing, its because it is. Atleast to me.
I said a few days ago – that a while back I had to just shelf the books. It was too much for me. I couldn’t take in all the information, and Josh was being lost in the muddle of words that may or may not have applied to him. I realize he struggles with things, and that he isn’t like everyone else, but I also realize that he is still a kid, and needs to be given the chance to be just that, without me shoving things down his throat to see if it worked because well “It worked for that kid who had this this and that.”
A few nights ago, I had to go to walmart. It was night, and since there weren’t as many people as usual there, I took Josh in with me. We made our way through the store, taking in the new surroundings, me wondering how far we would get before he had himself a melt down. Would he freak out first, or would I?
It wasn’t until he spied a shelf loaded with the latest “Cars” items, did he begin to have himself a little fit. Not in a bad way, he was just overly excited to see his latest obsession stacked high on the shelves in front of him. We stopped and took it all in a few minutes, before he selected himself a giant stuffed truck, tucked it under his arm and continued walking.
I could go off on all the things he did “Differently” than any other kid. I could say that he needed the one on the second shelf, in the back row, and any other would simply not do. I could say that he needed to examine them all – before he made his choice, and I could even go as far as saying some might think I am spoiling him too much – letting him take something that wasn’t his, without telling him he could first.
But I saw the little boy in him. The way his eyes lit up when he saw his favorite character sitting there. The way he acted as if he had been waiting his entire life and finally, FINALLY, he saw the right one. Sitting there. Waiting for him. I saw the excitement in him, and I got him that darn truck that is now giving his bear a run for his money.
We had a bit of an issue getting it paid for. The whole concept of having to pay for something didn’t seem to go over well with him, and all he saw was someone taking his beloved treasure away from him, and he wasn’t about to have it.
I look for the moments where HE comes out. I love those moments. I live for them. Seeing the excitement, that’s Josh. The Josh I remember. The one with the sparkles in his eyes, and the thrill on his face. The boy I remember, that doesn’t come out often…showed up late Friday night, and while most around would see just another kid, getting (yet another) toy…I saw the real kid, whos really still in there.
Most likely, its me forgetting, that there is more to this than therapy, and special classes. There is more to it than trying to get him to do something that he finds difficult, and there is more IN there. There has been all along. And hes starting to come out. Those eyes that hide behind his hair, telling there is more to him than meets the eye, were right. All along.
Sometimes hes just a boy.
Wanting a truck.