Kyd is pretty well behaved... well, when he wants to be.
He has his very hairy moments though and he can re-write the way you react and deal with things with just one sad look of dread and a look of deep distress.
This morning I went from thinking he was being awkward to realising that he was actually just confused, worried and maybe even scared of something as silly as dressing in something different to go to school in. That or the whole thing was over the inability to express his feelings properly and either way it was explosive.
He loves a good party, loves to dress up and loves to act silly... However he doesn't quite understand when you swap his everyday school costume (his uniform) for a completely random one or his own clothes.
He's 10 and has been at school for 5 years already... it used to be OK, he used to really look forward to own clothes day or dress up day...
Not any more!
I don't understand what has changed?!
We've had so many issues recently with the whole thing.
I used to just say to him about it the day before, show it to him, lay it out ready and then he used to think about it, sleep on it and he was happy to get dressed in whatever it was in the morning.
Now, however, he goes into COMPLETE meltdown mode!
It starts with a 'NOPE' and a 'I don't want too' and me saying 'but everyone is in a costume it'll be really really really fun!'.
It ends with a complete tantrum, stressful and dramatic tears, screams, kicking stuff and not even getting out of his PJ's and me saying 'It's OK you don't have to, it will be OK I promise' out of pure confusion, frustration and guilt, whilst avoiding the flinging arms and kicking out legs of a frustrated and angry Pre Teen.
It seems that even the suggestion that he does something different for school was just enough to push him over the edge. I wasn't forceful or angry with him and I tried so hard to calm him down so it didn't get to that stage. I just couldn't. He was just so far gone and into the tantrum that he was inconsolable.
I have no idea what has created this whole thing but this morning he looked so confused and upset at even the thought of wearing something completely different to go to school in and I felt so awful that I had even suggested he wear it and caused so much hurt inside him.
I tried to defuse the whole situation by saying we could pack it into a bag and he could decide at school thinking he had the best of both worlds then as I know he'd get to school and then he'd feel sad if he was the only one there in his uniform.
He just said 'No leave me alone, I feel sick, I don't want too, I don't want too' whilst screaming and punching the floor.
I then told him it was OK and that he could just go in his uniform and then he started with the 'I don't want to go' 'I hate it' & the 'I'm not very well' 's
What can you do with a child who is so big and strong willed that you can't get to him to cuddle him or fix it for him without getting hurt....
You put his favourite TV programme on and wait for the storm to pass... that is what you do!!
Once he had calmed down I heard the bell ring for playtime from the school (our house backs on to the playground) I thought that maybe by showing him that others were in their outfits he might calm down and go in.
It worked. He saw them all in colourful clothes and funny outfits and he said 'I go school now, I go as Hulk...'
Uhhhhhh HULK? I have no Hulk outfit?!
'Why Hulk?' I said
He said 'I like Hulk, like Hulk in Tesco's'...
Ahhhh Now I get it. I said he couldn't have a Hulk costume because it was too small and they didn't have his size!
Was this the cause of the whole thing? Did he not want to go in because he didn't have the costume he wanted? Or was he just confused and distressed?
Either way I tried to push the situation aside for a second and we did a quick DIY Hulk costume... How?
We smothered him in cheap Green Eye shadow form my random collection and cut up some old clothes so he looked like he'd burst them open... He looked awesome and he was so happy he bounced to school with a huge smile, no sign of the tantrum or the distress of a few hours before... I swear school will start to think I make this stuff up... if they don't already!!!
Success though I think!
I would love it if he could explain his feelings but no matter how hard I try I can't get it out of him as he can't seem to explain.
It might have been the hormones of a Pre Teen with Down Syndrome or the confusion of something new being thrown at him all of a sudden or a case of I wanted to be Hulk.... but at the end of the day he is just a boy, trying to understand life and I have to realise that these tantrums, confusions and distress are part of life now and try and find some way of defusing these situations before they get to the point of no return like today... and to stop feeling guilty for him not being able to tell me what he wants, because the guilt DOESN'T help!!!
Parenting is hard bloody work sometimes!!!