Oh no, we are fine. I am damn lucky. He sleeps and eats well, and overall he is a happy, cheerful little guy.
I didn’t do anything right or wrong, he just happens to be this way. It’s not even my genes, most probably.
I’m still wondering though how all those mashed potatoes I ate in Bali got converted to eyelashes, bones, little fingernails and everything else around and in between. I’m still stuck at, like, pregnancy 5.0 in my mind.
Anyway, what I meant to say is that this whole experience must be so difficult for control freaks and people who are used to having things their way. People have always been unpredictable for me, and I also used to have a rather chaotic job, curve balls thrown at me left right and centre, so I’m not really rattled in this regard. He is who he is, at this moment. I knew and I accepted that he would come with this pre-programmed package regarding his basic temperament, and there is precious little I can do to change any of it at this time. He slept through the first night – and every night ever since. But if he didn’t, it’s not because I’m doing something terribly wrong. It surprises me how difficult some people find it that they lose control completely. I got lucky, well, I’ve slept enough to be able to think clearly, I suppose.
But then, of course, I have other fears. Like, he is still so perfect, and I will definitely screw it up. And of course no idea how I will deal with the stressful stuff, when you need to be strategic and resourceful and firm, like, when he starts crawling and pulling the room apart, and later when separation anxiety comes in. Others would have a lot more experience managing stuff like that. I would think general people skills matter. So many things will be up to me, then. Those basic installed programmes can be modified and upgraded and tweaked, but not erased or uninstalled. It won’t be any of my doing if they are right or wrong, but what they develop into, that’s up to me. Scary.
I’ve just realised I haven’t had a table for something like ten years and never in those years did I have a meal at a table in my home (obviously, I’m really good at eating in my lap in a reclining position, plate on my tummy, while typing emails). I still remember how to use a table because you can’t really lie down in a restaurant, let alone the school canteen. But I got really upset when it dawned on me that probably I will need to teach this kid of mine to eat properly at a table with spoon and fork and all that. Hell, I can’t eat properly with a fork and knife, and nor do I want to. But I can’t inflict the consequences on my son, now can I?
It’s all set now, and there is hardly anything I can do about it, no control anymore, just wait and see, but I really do hope that the early eye contact and huge smiles and all the effort that goes into formulating short cries and communication means that he didn’t inherit much of the autistic traits. Or maybe just a little bit, only the good stuff. Still years until we find out. My heart is in pieces, partly in Asia, I would be devastated if we weren’t flexible enough to travel the world later, in a few years’ time. I want to be able to put him in a mei tai and board a plane and go see places like the beach or elephant park. And go see daddy’s family in Indonesia. I’m a single mother, I can deal with “normal”, maybe, on a good day, but sadly, not with a “challenge”. I would crumble. Besides medical issues and accidents, this is my biggest fear, that my little son will grow up to be very weird and have meltdowns all the time.
I know…. I know this is simply not how it works. I still need to learn an awful lot about losing control. How to accept the fact even in extreme situations, if I have to. Baby steps. One day at a time. It’s gonna be difficult enough to be my son anyway, as it is. It’s gonna be really difficult to be a good mother. If only I was a bit stronger… now it’s still easy. Food and cuddles whenever he wants them…. (why is losing control really so difficult for anyone at this point….?)