I am convinced that the person least listened to is a mother. Of course, we do our best providing instructions, guiding our delightful bundles of joys, so that they can be functioning members of society. But then you have a moment when you wonder if they will truly be able to cope in the world.
Let me set the scene. Both Bailey and Bryce were going to be done at the same time yesterday which was like me winning the lottery. Bailey normally gets off work earlier, so I spend twenty minutes waiting for him as he text me “I’m coming right now” which translated into his language means “I am talking and you will have to wait.”. So, you can imagine how free I felt yesterday afternoon with leisurely reading my book by the fire. I had given Bailey all of the details, plus this is not the first time Bryce has brought him home, so I figured all would be well. That is, until I received the first text……
“Mom, I’m done.”
“Okay, remember Bryce is bringing you home. Oh, and don’t forget to bring home your coat.”
“Okay, cool Mom.”
It was crickets for about fifteen minutes until a group text came in from Bailey to the whole family wondering when Bryce would be coming to the cafeteria to retrieve him. Now, only a mother of a special needs child will understand the panic that tends to seize your insides. I know he is in a safe place, but there is a level of anxiety associated with raising him. I call is SNPSD (Special Needs Parent Stress Disorder). This is where at any moment you can completely lose your composure and freak out before gathering more information. And while he is a capable young man with Down syndrome, I will always have a splash of uncertainty that accompanies me on a daily basis. So, how does one handle this situation? Well, I call Bryce. Thirty minutes have now passed and he hasn’t responded to the group text nor shown up in the cafeteria. Bryce answers me on the first ring, yet he ignores a group text. Baffling.
“Where are you?”
“I am talking to a teacher.”
“Oh, well, your brother texted you and he has been waiting for you for 30 minutes. He is kind of freaking out.” (I didn’t share that I was too.)
“Okay, I will get him.”
Now, here is my confusion. Why didn’t Bryce just text his brother? Why was my delightful afternoon interrupted by two young men who happen to be in the same building, but are unable to connect? So, when they got home, I immediately looked at both of them with this inspirational message……”Boys, it is up to you to communicate with one another. Bryce, if you are going to be delayed, let your brother know. Bailey, call your brother directly instead of including your Dad and me into the conversation. This is a life skill that everyone should have and I am enlightening you both.” Oh, and the teacher he was talking to, they weren’t talking about school, they were discussing soccer.
Of course, they looked at me like I was completely off my rocker and probably heard two words out of my motivational, life-changing speech. Oh, well. I should be used to the whole “not listening” portion of motherhood. They certainly picked up my sentence enhancers with no problem. Maybe next time, my motivational speech should include those.