The monkey has a thing about ketchup. He will eat ketchup with anything, with everything. Crackers? Ketchup. Cantaloupe? Ketchup. Grapes? Ketchup.
I know, this sounds a little bit gross. But my son has lost so much weight since he started his ADHD, which causes him to lose his appetite. Everyday his teacher sends a note stating he didn’t eat anything at all. We make sure he has fruits and cereal ready for him every morning. Since he hasn’t taken his meds yet, he is pretty hungry when he wakes up. As soon as he gets home, my parents have food for him before he heads to therapy since by then he’s pretty hungry by then too. But during the day, he will either eat one cracker, or one grape, but most of the time, he doesn’t eat a thing. He has lost so much weight that my dad had to put an additional hole on his belt so his pants won’t fall off.
This is why I don’t care if he wants ketchup with cantaloupe. At this point, whatever he eats, I’m ecstatic.
The problem with the ketchup is that it gets all over his hands. He still struggles with using utensils. And since he hates having his hands dirty, he will smear them on his shirt, his pants, and many times, our walls.
I was talking to my husband today about painting our walls. As much as we want to keep up with the cleaning, they need to be painted due to the many scrubs that they get. Today I had to scrub our new leather sofas, because of the dry ketchup that is there.
We have tried working with our son for a long time about using napkins, about using forks, and it goes in one ear and out the other. His napkins are his clothes, our walls, our windows, our furniture.
And it is not just ketchup. He loves to put his handprints on the TV screen, on the windows, and on the mirrors. When we have visitors, we have to casually mention, if you see handprints, they belong to our monkey.
I was seeing pictures of our home prior to my son being born. And my home looks spotless. Our daughter was 12 when my son was born so our home was very well kept. And now, I think our home has the ‘We tried’ look. If you come and visit us, please know we have tried to clean up the stains as much as possible.
I was talking to a coworker of mine and was telling her my dilemma. How I try to keep up with my job, my son’s school issues, his therapies, his meds, his medical bills, the insurances, my daughter’s graduation coming up, etc. The weekends we try to keep up with our home. Weekends I do the laundry, my husband cleans the yard.
And my co-workers response was, “At least you have someone to come home to.” Then it hit me. She is single, her kids are all grown up, have families of their own. And she comes home to an empty house. So she stays late at work as much as possible so that she can delay her home coming.
And these are the moments that one has to step back and evaluate their life. I love coming home to a crazy house. I love coming home to see my monkey running around, singing, playing with his doggies.
This weekend, we had to assemble a new trampoline because he used the old one so much (and the doggies like to jump with him) that it tore. But isn’t that the point of things? To be used?
Isn’t that the point of having a home? To be lived in?
And we may paint our home this summer. We may need to get new kitchen chairs (I can’t get out the current ketchup stains). I may need to do laundry more than just on Saturdays.
And that is okay.
So if you ever stop by our home, don’t fret on the stains. They are due to our crazy, chaotic, happy home.