A journey of a thousand miles…

We’ve skimmed some off the surface.  Not a lot…not yet, but we’ve skimmed some off.  J’s blood pressure isn’t textbook, but it isn’t the horrible mess it was in October, and the doctors were pleased with his willingness to exercise.  They saw him looking slimmer, but I’m pretty sure that he’s also gotten taller so I said as much…let’s not call him slender when we would regularly call him taller, shall we?

Yesterday I decided to take a leap of faith and tell J we were going to the doctor.  I calmly stated what the schedule for today was and I waited to see what his reaction would be.  He took it, thank goodness, in his stride and didn’t howl, screech, grunt, whimper or groan.  He also didn’t run away in horror.  None of these things would have surprised me because they used to be the norm.  His levelheadedness in dealing with the news was, I confess, a pleasant surprise.  This morning he woke up early, stayed relaxed throughout all the preparations to leave the house and was very congenial during his appointment…he even asked the doctor to listen to his heart!

Sometimes life is about a few lateral moves that you don’t realize are moving you forward because the ground is sloped.  These can move you downward also, but it seems we’re getting somewhere in a roundabout sort of way.  J is happier…staying up a little later, getting up a little more easily, breathing better and rocking out to Florence + the Machine when he runs.  Life is good, and getting better.

I was excited by the idea (vague though it was) that J might not need the Risperdal forever, that those pesky hormones and adolescence might be untangling themselves from his Autism.  (I visualize Autism like Kaa in The Jungle Book…charmingly clingy thing that just wants to gobble you up if you let it.  I know I’m weird.)  I liked that J is becoming known among staff, even if this means that the boxing gloves and Slinky make him rather obvious, but the thing is -and I know it might be sheer politeness, but I’ll take it- people comment on how “sweet” he is, how well he behaves.  (They might be trying to appease him…”Good J!  Good J!” so he won’t use those gloves.)

Where do we go from here?  Well…we are going to hide broccoli (as best we can) in other dishes.  OK, we are going to hide other stuff, too, but I’m starting with broccoli.  My husband suggested that old staple: steamed broccoli with cheese sauce.  My response was “of all the people in this world, J would be the one who manages to lick clean all the cheese, leaving the broccoli intact.”  He had to agree with me, grudgingly.  I am going to experiment with breaking the broccoli down as much as I can and mixing it into other things because if this kid can eat Chicken Florentine and not lick off the spinach, he can eat broccoli…and other things not colored white or yellow.

My experiment for this weekend is buying different kinds of flour and figuring out how to use them.  (Yes, this will be a repeat of the “cloud of flour incident” of 2011, but it’s for the greater good and -you know me!- I’m an altruist to a fault.)  If I can make noodles out of flour that is not wheat, and if these are tasty and less fattening, more power to me.  I am on a mission and, as usual, I might crash and burn on this one, but I think it’s worth the effort.  What if (BIG what if) J ends up LIKING vegetables?  I know it’s a long shot, but I’m willing to try to get him to like vegetables…I just need to keep a spit-bucket handy, that’s all!

So, in spite of all the complications of everyday life, we are floating here.  There is light at the end of the tunnel…it’s a LONG tunnel, but it’s leading somewhere and there’s light.  Yes, I am familiar with how Wile E. Coyote gets all excited as he reaches the entrance of the tunnel because he hears the beep-beep of the Roadrunner and it turns out to be a BUS, but I am willing to get hit by the thing with headlights.

Oh, and J knows how to count to 20…nope, I didn’t see that one coming.  (I know, I know…and I call myself a mother?  Yeah…I kinda do!)  Like Florence sings: the dog days are over, the dog days are gone…


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