Friday, August 19, 2016

Essential Asher

I have believed for a long time, since Asher was just a wee babe, that he is one of the most emotionally intelligent people I know. From an age when he couldn't really be expected to talk, even were he a typically developing kid, he would seem to sense when someone in the family was feeling upset and try to connect with them in some way: touching, holding hands, putting his face next to the upset person's face. 

Since he has begun to verbally communicate one of his first phrases was, 'You okay?' And it's not just a flippant, one time, perfunctory 'You okay?' when he senses someone is hurt or upset. He says it over and over, with the person's name if he needs to get their attention, until the person gives him a satisfactory answer. If the answer is, 'No', he is immediately there, hugging, consoling, possibly tackling (if it's a brother). If the answer is, 'Yes', he moves on with whatever task he was in the middle of.

This evening was a tough-on-patience kind of time. Every one of my boys, in their own unique way, was losing it, and I, in turn, was losing it. With Asher it came to a head surrounding his pottying or lack thereof. He has recently decided he needs privacy in the bathroom but we can't give it to him completely because he may throw something in the toilet or wander around the room or pee in a corner. So, we play this game of 'Mom/Dad will stand over here, you go potty.' Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't. Tonight it didn't. Even after throwing him in the tub and turning on the water, which works about 50% of the time, there was no pee. But he did decide to dribble on the hall carpet, and on his uncovered mattress (waiting to be made after an accident the night before). 

I felt so frustrated! And so defeated!

He smiled up at me and I did not have a ready smile back.

'You okay, Mom?'

'You okay?!'

'No, Asher. I'm not okay. I'm frustrated. Remember, potty is for the toilet.'

'Yeah! . . . You okay?'

This time closing in with a hug, 'You okay, Mama?'

'Asher, potty does not go in the hall or on your bed. It goes in the toilet.'


Now putting his forehead against mine, 'You okay?'

I didn't have the energy to keep the grumpy face and broke into a big smile.

Big, slobbery kiss on my lips.

'You okay?'

'Yeah, Buddy, I'm okay.'

Huge bear hug. Any leftover tension just drained completely away.

What a gift this boy is.