Last week I took my son to his weekly cello lesson. I usually drop him off at the start of his lesson, go to a meeting for an Events Committee, leave the meeting a bit early and head out to my daughter’s dance lesson while my partner leaves work to go pick our son up from his lesson and then they head home. I thought this was great. I can fit it all in and everyone gets to where they need to go. It is a typical week day evening schedule in our house. But, this day I didn’t have a meeting so I stayed at his lesson. When he was done I was talking to his teacher and found out that he has been without his notebook, where they keep track of what he is working on and what he should be practicing, for two weeks. And, he had lost three sets of new music. I knew NOTHING about this.
As with many children with Autism he has HUGE organizational (Executive Functioning Disorder) skill problems. We are continually working on them but if I don’t know something is happening I can not help him work on fixing it. He and I talked on the way home where it could be and how we would look for it before his next lesson and going forward how we can work on taking care of his music.
He then looked at me and said, “I like it when you stay at my lesson. I don’t like it when you leave.”
That set me back on my heels. He usually doesn’t like having me around. I am not the preferred parent for him. He and I butt heads quite often. So, I had to start thinking, what am I doing? He wants me to be with him. He is a 13 year-old boy and he is not going to want me around much longer. But, now that he is asking for me I am starting to look at things and see where I can cut back.
First thing is not being on so many committees, a board member, executive committee member and all around volunteer at a couple other places, plus working tax season. So, I will drop one committee for now. The one that took the most time and kept me from staying at his cello lessons. We will see how this goes and maybe I will slowly wind down another thing or two.
I won’t have my baby boy forever. One day soon he will look at me and say, “Please, go back to work.” But, for now I will be happy he wants me around and take all the time I can get.