“Sing to me mummy like I’m your baby” Buzzbee demanded this week at bedtime.
“You will always be my baby even when you are married with your own children! Why do you want me to sing to you tonight? I thought you said you were too big for lullabies anymore!”
Ok not my most sensitive response but the request came so out of the blue and I was a little confused about why he was asking now. He hasn’t wanted or been able to tolerate me singing to him since he became a ‘big boy’ and started school.
(Baby voice) “I really need to hear you sing me ‘Hushabye mountain’ like you did when I was your ‘Cuddly Koala Bear’” “Can you sit on the floor beside my bed and stroke my hair at the same time too?”
At this point I feel I need to state that I do not consider myself to be an exceptional singer and in my opinion I have a voice that only Buzzbee could love but I didn’t need asking twice to fulfil his request. I spent the next 30 minutes singing to him and stroking his hair and listening to him make gentle humming (self-soothing) sounds and for the first time in months Buzzbee settled quite quickly to sleep, but still at the time I was feeling somewhat confused about where this was coming from.
Please don’t misunderstand me. Buzz asking me to sing to him and wanting to be my ‘cuddly Koala’ again is fantastic. He has always been very avoidant and extremely self-reliant, so anytime he allows us to get close to him, we take full advantage of the opportunity to strengthen his attachment to us (Oops, I better keep going because I am starting to get very soppy and welling up thinking about how much of both my boy’s life I have missed out on and how much I wish I could turn back the clocks and fill in all the lost and precious moments).
Buzzbee has always acted at home much younger than he really is and we have learnt to live with it (go with the flow), and school are slowly learning to respond to his emotional age and not his chronological age when dealing with issues during the day. But, this week his need to regain the years he lost seems so much more important to him.
So, why is it so different at the moment? What is making him feel so vulnerable at the moment?
I have probably tied myself in knots this week trying to understand what is troubling him. Last week was the 4th anniversary of the boys moving in, so at first I thought maybe this could be playing on his mind, but when I thought back over this: Beeswax usually regresses at this time of year, but Buzzbee usually “claims us” by being helpful and a “big boy”. We knew that there had been changes at school which he was coping with pretty well and being very open about how he was feeling about them. No doubt in some way these were adding to his anxiety, but still I wasn’t convinced that I had got to the route of his need to take a step back in time.
I began to over-analyse every aspect of his usual regressed behaviour to see if anything had changed, but it wasn’t until I collected him from school yesterday and he started talking about Beedog and how she will never have puppies that it dawned on me.
We have had Beedog spayed and she has needed extra care this week.
Bad, Bad Honey. How could I have missed it?
Buzzbee adores Beedog and she is a very soothing influence on him at times when he is feeling at his most vulnerable and I guess this week he is feeling helpless and lost, seeing his ‘true best friend’ not feeling quite herself, add this on top of everything else that is going on for him at the moment and it is not surprising he is feeling so fragile. I cannot believe I missed it! In his mind Beedog is his source of unconditional comfort and affection but at a time when he really needs to snuggle up with her, he can’t because of the risk of accidently hurting her.
I cannot say whether his sudden need for babying is because he is feeling fragile because Beedog is fragile, or if taking away the opportunity for Beesdog to have puppies is stirring up something primal in him about his birth mum. I could spend all evening hypothesising about what is driving this behaviour/need and yes, it is important to understand what is going on for him, but far more important for me is to help him work through this in the most comfortable way for him and if in the process of I get to have extra snuggles, hugs and kisses with my ‘cuddly koala’ then I am not going to complain and for those time when I cannot be with him I will give school the link to the YouTube clip he likes (he is not keen on the ‘Chitty Chitty Bang Bang’ version because of the child snatcher).
Earlier in the week I started writing a completely different post for this week’s #WASO about what the future holds for our family and how both boys were showing signs of regressing into old behaviours to help them cope with future changes but somewhere along the way, the regression that was happening for Buzzbee here and now took over. So I guess all I can say is watch this space.