Unfortunately, life does not ever wrap up neatly.
Abel has started to live in a pig sty again--never a good sign. I have to nag him to shower and blackmail him to bring his clothes down for the laundry. There are dishes with rotting food in his room. He's staying up all night playing online games and sleeping all day.
- And yet, he comes down regularly to tickle Jacob and chase him around the house.
- He always follows through with his chores of feeding the cats and the dogs.
- If I ask him to take out the trash, he does so without argument.
- Last night, in the middle of the night, he went down and did the dishes in the kitchen. He was so pleased with having done so, that at 3:30 this morning, he told me about it when he heard me heading back to my room after a trip down the hall. I think he'd been waiting anxiously for me to wake up so that he could share his achievement.
And this in itself shows progress. It's a little boy thing to want to tell your mom what you've done, but in the past, he wouldn't have been able to wait until I woke on my own. He would have come and woken me up, regardless of the time of night.
Perhaps that's a good example of what to pay attention to when you're raising a child/adult with special needs. Abel is 21. He has a wicked sense of humor and an adult view of many things, but when it comes right down to it, he's still a little boy in many ways and I must not measure his achievements with an adult yardstick. I have to make an Abel yardstick, and try to always remember to use only it, and to avoid any other measuring device.
Well, that wasn't so hard. :) Perhaps in the next blog post I can start getting into the more difficult subjects.