Three apples and an orange…

We cannot, although it is quite evident and inevitable, believe that it is the day before Thanksgiving.  We also cannot believe that we are back on the med, and having the occasional (and of diminishing severity) meltdown with SIB, but there you have it.  It is what it is and that’s all that it is…

While things are slowing down, the SIB is still there.  More smiles during it (which is upsetting, but I understand that it’s not the same to him as it is to us,) and less frequency and violence, but it’s still there.  I now ask him if he needs to complete his ritual to his satisfaction before I replace his wrist brace.  Sometimes he needs to touch the side of his head, and sometimes he doesn’t.

The current obsession is with the bandaids.  They have to be placed just-so.  When Dada asks how my morning has gone in one of his e-mails I usually tell him “the triangulation, alignment, calibration and placement of the bandaids went well,” or “neither 10th grade Geometry nor Euclidean geometry prepared me for this morning.”  Yesterday I had to redo them immediately after being done with applying them.  The moment you realize your kid is looking at you like this…


you know you’ve done a crappy job and you need to correct it…  Correct it I did.  Quickly.  While asking him to breathe deeply and be kind to himself.

The other day we sent an update to the psych and said “we see an improvement, but he’s still very impatient and sometimes doesn’t seem to want to stop hitting himself.”  He said it was OK to give him the full milligram of Risperdal.  We agreed that this might be wise, but decided to stave off until we felt it was inevitable.

And here we are, still on the half milligram, and doing fine.  I wouldn’t say our problem is gone, or J is fine now, but we’re working on being better.

I was messaging back and forth with my niece this morning, and she asked what -to me, anyway- sounded like a rather existential question.  When I answered it I referred to the three apples and one orange in the title of this post.  I wrote to her, in a rather long-winded (no, you wouldn’t know about me being long-winded, would you?) reply, that if you ask someone (little Timmy, I believe, was my subject) what do you get when you have three apples and someone gives you an orange.  The answer is three apples and an orange because no one says “four pieces of fruit.”

The context for that illustrative scenario was different, but the essence is the same.  Just because you put two things together doesn’t mean that you can turn them into one cohesive mass.  Medication plus J doesn’t mean a solution.  It means J is taking medication to help him be more open to certain negotiations that he is having trouble accepting in his current anxious state.

We have three apples and an orange.  Not a fruit basket.  Not four pieces of fruit.  We have three of one, and one of another.  That doesn’t mean that we won’t end up with a basket of fruit, but it means we’re not quite there yet.

And for this we are thankful.  We have three of one, and one of another.  We used to have all one kind.  We are adding and altering things to what we have.  We are working on this.  We are proactive and productive, even at a very small scale.

So off I go to season the world’s smallest turkey, and to make a well-deserved and much-needed cup of coffee to help me navigate the rest of this day.

I wish for you a safe and happy Thanksgiving with a tasty meal and many loved ones who understand your kind of gratitude, and your scale of accomplishment.  I hope you accept your apples, oranges, lemons, kiwis…whatever fruit you have in whatever proportion it is available, and eventually make a basket and say “this is not that bad…I can handle THIS.”  In the meantime, let’s be accepting of the fact that not all gratitude comes with a warm glow (unless, of course, you can count acid reflux caused by corollary anxiety,) or with a picture-perfect background.  Gratitude is about knowing that you have “the chance.”  The result is maybe still lurking, floating, skulking, hiding, traipsing, scurrying out there…but you have “the chance.”

That’s all we need right now.

Peace, people.  I am thankful I get to monologue at you, and you don’t (can’t?) throw tomatoes at me…even those, too, are fruit for my potential basket……….



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