Out of Control.
While warmer weather brings more daylight to play and frolic it also brings more violent weather, less control and more fear swirling in Jake's super brain like its own cyclone. I struggled to get Jake in bed tonight as the words "tornado watch" and "severe thunderstorm warning" texted into his phone, came across the television, blasted from his favorite radio station.
Jake has such fear about the weather and I cannot assure him that we won't lose power, have wind damage or otherwise. With the new and unpredictable global weather patterns, I don't know if anyone can predict it accurately and even that won't calm his internal storm.
He sits up in his room, buried in his weighted blanket, just thinking about losing the house, sleeping in the basement, getting struck by lightening or worse, being picked up in a tornado. Such fear, anxiety and uncertainty. We all have it, but work to mask it.
Tonight while I was teaching (in the basement studio) he texted me from his bedroom, "I'm worried something is going to happen to me." I didn't get the text until :30 minutes later. His words pierced my heart and his attempts to call me on facetime in his fear scrolled on my iPhone screen. "Missed Facetime Call (4)".
Oh gosh, I failed him. I wasn't there when he felt scared.
I ran up to his room, trying to stay calm but desperate for him not to see my emotions as well. While I usually have an answer for just about everything, or can fake it, I didn't have an answer this time.
I can't control the weather.
No, God is not mad at him.
We are safe.
While I'm thrilled he is able to verbalize his fear and seek out reassurance, his words can be so, just so.
Open to calming suggestions on this one friends!
It's a scary thought for many parents of kids with developmental differences: What does the future hold? Will he/she make enough money to support themselves? Will they be living off a "system" that is out of money already?
I don't like to venture there in my brain either, but on some level I know I've got to prepare him and myself. I feel desperate to build or carve out a unique and lucrative future for him.
We try to take every opportunity that comes our way. We try out construction experiments, cleaning the church, using public transportation, visiting construction sites, playing restaurant at home, doing laundry, yard work, cooking and trash collection etc... to try and see where the interests and talents lie. It wasn't until recently that Jake mentioned he wanted to be a model "like the guy in the Kohl's ads".
At first I laughed, knowing the cut-throat world modeling can be, then I looked at his nearly perfect features... not mine.... no genetic link thank goodness! He's got the olive skin, the symmetrical face, the dark eyes and he's tall, really tall already. Then pondered, he loves to work out, exercise calms him. He might be able to make this work just by how he's wired!
Then my brain took another hop... this could be perfect. What other job could a person have where they don't have to read or do math? Perfecto... stand there and look good Jake, smile, dance and stay in shape, be a diva (not hard, trust me) ..... and let's see what we get!
Three job interviews and one professional photoshoot later and we're trying our hand with a talent agency. It'll probably turn out to be a scam or something, but we're giving it a whirl and seeing what the possibilities are. The photographer seemed to love working with him and Jake had a blast. Another friend said his look "speaks to the camera" whatever that means.
So we'll try for a year, make some connections, get some good head shots and see what the future holds.
The photos above were taken by the amazing photographer Tim Colburn in Virginia!
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