Today is movie day.
It’s movie day because a friend of Tucker’s asked him to stay overnight. It’s the second time (ever) that he has stayed over night anywhere (besides a grandparent’s house). That’s big news. The first time he stayed there he was planning on staying until 9 PM. I received a text at 8:30 asking if he could try to spend the night. I’m glad he didn’t call…because I began sobbing (we really should buy stock in kleenex).
I know it seems silly – but when your child makes a ‘neurotypical’ stride…it’s big. Really big, actually.
I responded, ‘Of course.’
He replied, ‘But if I need to come home in the middle of the night you will come get me right?’
I responded, ‘Of course.’
So, here we are, Estelle and me. On the couch – an opportunity to be alone with her and love her up in all the right ways. A chance to watch movies – to really be able to watch them (of course after I finish this post) without worrying about Tucker’s reaction. Reaction to the sounds. Reaction to the video. Reaction to the emotional nature. Reaction to us taking up ‘his’ space. Reaction to messing with his daily schedule. Reactions…
Sometimes we all need a break and I’m OVER THE MOON that he not only has this friend – but that this friend’s mom works hard at ‘getting’ Tucker. She knows and she tries so hard – she gets that I don’t necessarily want special treatment, but I do want people to try to understand Tucker. She does just that.
Back to the movies…
We’re about to watch The Maze Runner. Why is this a big deal? Tucker is not a movie guy. When I say he is not a movie guy, I mean he is NOT a movie guy. To get him to watch a movie we must go to the movies, and bribe. With large popcorn and extra butter. With caffeinated beverages. With Junior Mints. With promises of outside seats and available earplugs. I recognize that going to the movies presents significant sensory overload, but that is only part of the puzzle.
The larger piece to the puzzle is his inability to recognize fiction from non-fiction. So much so that during Transformers he turned to me and said, “Now mom….this movie is…well…you know – it’s not real right? It’s fiction?”
This is one of those moments that you hold in your giggle and smile at his innocence.
“Right Tucker, it is fiction. This is not a true story.”
“Well, I thought so – but I just needed to check because if our Suburban turns into a robot I wonder where I would go.”
Well…I hadn’t thought about that!
Part of his clear dislike of fiction has to do with his inability to lie (see Day #144 – Divine Lies), his inability to understand sarcasm and metaphors (see Day #17 – Say What You Mean, Mean What You Say), and his absolute disdain for fiction in general (see Day #79 – I’m Not a Turkey). I think it’s safe to say that this is a pattern.
Instead of being frustrated with him I try to think about it from his viewpoint…
What is the point of reading or watching something that isn’t true?
Shouldn’t everything I watch or read teach me something?
Otherwise, what is the point?
The teacher is me says, right on! The artist in me says, no way dude. Just some more internal confusion to try to sort out.
So, Stelli and I are going to sit here and watch movies the rest of the night.
After The Maze Runner we’re going to watch Pirates of the Caribbean and then Harry Potter. It’s our chance to get out of Tucker’s world…even if just for a night. We’ll get our break and be ready to storm around him tomorrow (see Day #105 – Eye of the Storm).
But tonight? It’s a rare occurrence that it gets to be about her. So, tonight’s blog will be cut a bit short because it IS about her, some orange pop, buttery homemade popcorn, make-believe stories, and Captain Jack Sparrow.