The monkey used to love it when we would pick him up at therapy. My parents would drop him off, and my husband and I , after we would get out of work, we’d pick him up and bring him home. And he would be so happy hugging us throughout the ride home.
But lately he’s been struggling when we pick him up. We’ve noticed he’s been going through separation anxiety when it comes to my parents. I think it’s amazing that he loves my parents, and that he wants to be with them. The problem though, is that separation anxiety is typically at 2 or 3 years old. Not at 6 years old. And when my parents leave, he gets so upset.
When he’s done with therapy, he will walk towards the waiting area, and as soon as he see us, he will throw himself on the floor, and he loses it. He will go from 1 to 10 in an instant. And he just can’t come back to us.
So we’ve decided in order to avoid all of this my parents will just bring him home. Except on Thursdays. Those are the days that my dad goes to prayer at church so we have to pick him up. And we know it’s rough. My daughter went to pick him up a few weeks ago and we realized it was going to be too much for her. When I went by myself, it was also too much for me too. So now my husband and I both make sure we are there on Thursdays. We need to tag team this.
And today was no exception. During therapy, the therapist said the monkey saw my parents leaving from the window and he lost it. He was doing so well following the curriculum for the day ,but as soon as he saw my parents leave, he just couldn’t take it. It took her about 20 minutes to calm him down and refocus on his tasks. But even then, he didn’t do so well. And when they were done, she opened the door, monkey saw us, and he just lost it. My husband had to take him to the bathroom to try to calm him. The monkey was screaming in agony, and trying to hurt us because of how mad he was. We weren’t able to calm him there so he carried him to the car and had to sit with him in the back seat, holding his hands so he won’t hurt himself or us, trying to give him deep pressures to try to calm him down and at the same time reassuring him, letting him know that it’s okay.
We thought when he’d get home he’d be better. But after his shower, after having dinner, it was just as bad. He was so upset. He was still crying so much, that nothing would comfort him. He became so upset he wanted to hit us and bite us. It took almost three hours for him to stop crying and fall sleep. It seems we were doing so well just a few months ago and now we hit this road block.
Separation anxiety is part of childhood. Im glad he’s going through the phases of growing up, even if we are delayed by three years. I keep thinking at least we are moving forward. It’s a slow pace but we are moving. And that gives me hope.
But I have to be honest, today was tough. His meltdown was more than what we are used to. And now that he’s sound asleep, I’m able to regain my composure, regain my patience, and get ready for another day. Tomorrow will be our second chance to be better.
When the monkey had calmed down, before he fell asleep, and before the meds had kicked in, he came over to the sofa where I was sitting, forced himself to sit on my lap, then kissed me and hugged me. His way of saying he was sorry.
We all deserve to be loved a little bit more on our bad days.