--You need me, to put you in the trees.
Mates of State
We all say no to our kids. No to more candy, later bedtimes, running in the street, eating mud, hitting siblings, saying bad words, and on and on. For all its brevity and even its bad rap, no is a very important word. No is the word that draws boundaries and keeps my kids safe. I use it all the time and am not afraid to do so.
Usually. I am usually not afraid to say no. However Lamp hears no more than any kid should have to and sometimes it breaks my heart.
Can I ride a bike mom?
No sweetie. Not yet, I say and hope I'm not lying.
Mom can you just carry me to the baby's room?
No honey, you have to wait.
Will you help me do the monkey bars?
No, I can't honey, they're too high.
Because she has to rely on other people so much--namely, me--and I and limited in my capacity be it hands, time or strength, I have to say no to quite a few simple and basic requests day in and day out. No's that would be yes's for just about any other kid. Or better yet, not even a yes, because there would never be a question asked in the first place because whatever it was that she wanted to do, she could just do it. Can you carry me to the couch? Can you take me outside? Can you go get my blankie? None of these requests are dangerous, unhealthy, or ridiculous. But so often the first word out of my mouth is and has to be no.
This past weekend PSP was climbing trees with her new neighborhood friends when Lamp asked if she could go in the trees as well. I carried her over to the tree and tried to find a branch low enough for me to set her on and somehow sturdy enough for her to sit and hold onto. After a few minutes I brought her back to the blanket and the answer again was no.
After a few minutes B started tinkering with a cable attached to a small pulley the former homeowners had left behind. Within a few minutes he attached her swing, tied the cable to her power chair and hoisted her up in the trees like the other girls. Only higher.
This is typical for us--and many special needs parents on the whole I would assume--thinking outside the box constantly. Doing things differently, anticipating scenarios beforehand. Whether it's adjusting your living space or going on an outing you always have to think a few steps ahead.
Anyway, she smiled and laughed and played house with the other girls--you know after they climbed onto their low lying branches. I hugged my husband and gratefully thought, you were made to be her dad. In the end it doesn't change things that much, but it sure feels good to turn a no into a yes every now and then.
We be like, Boom. Take that limb differences.