This weekend I had began to write a #WASO post about the plans I had made for this weekend, for the boys and myself to have some quality time together while Bumble is away for the weekend.
However the past 48 hours has been probably one of the most stressful weekends we have had for some time, and while there are some parts that I could still write about. At this moment in time I don’t feel it would be right for me to post this post.
That does not mean of course that I am choosing to ignore the theme this week. I spend most of my waking day ‘Making Plans’ and trying to avoid micromanaging every moment of our days to help the boys remain regulated, and more often than not, the plans do not turn out as hoped (take his weekend as an example). On the flip side, on the rare occasions I have tried spontaneity, it has the majority of the time rapidly gone south and Bumble and I find ourselves in a situation where we need to tap into our damage limitation skills to salvage something of the day/weekend.
Last weekend was one of these times. Last weekend marked the 2nd anniversary of the boys’ adoption being finalised and this year it happens to also mark the end of Halloween the half-term school holidays. We have just about managed to cling onto a molecule of sanity during the week but we desperately needed to get away for a couple of days so that Waxy could return to school on a high rather than in a state of shame because it had gone all wrong at the last minute.
As a last minute decision Bumble, the boys and I threw some bits and bobs into the car (okay let us be realistically I did all the packing) and we headed down to my parent’s caravan for the weekend and made arrangements to meet up with my parents and their gorgeous puppies as an adoption day anniversary surprise for the boys.
The boys love going down to the caravan and were excited to throw themselves into all the Halloween fun, as well as letting loose at the beach. Usually the boys love Halloween (it has taken some adjusting me for me as I have never been a fan) and are generally calmer than usual, so maybe Bumble and I allowed ourselves to fall into a false sense of security and took our eyes off the ball, but our weekend did not go to plan.
Don’t get me wrong we still had a good time but the boys, especially Buzzbee needed far more management than we had expected – picture a 130cm raging, tearful T-Rex with a toothache and you will be getting close.
Every attempt Bumble and I could think of to support and help him settle, was failing miserably and Waxy was certainly not helping matters. The more Buzz fell apart. The more Waxy openly showed his irritation and frustration for the ‘dramas’ his brother was making in public. Cue Buzzbee falling apart further because “my brother hates me”.
Bumble and I started to feel we were in a unwinnable situation, and toyed with returning home early (I knew my parents would have understood if we felt we had to do this). As a last ditched attempt to recover the day, we took the boys to the evening show (not something we would usually do on a theme night because they do not respond well to the fancy dress contests when they do not win) but to the absolute relief of Bumble and I, a trip to the evening show was just the distraction we needed for the boys.
While Waxy’s distraction did not surprise us, once we knew what the show was – He is after all a 14 year old boy and no matter how much I hate it. Young female dancers in skimpy costumes are going to get his attention very quickly (the penny only dropped when he volunteered to sit with Buzzbee near the front of the stage – he will never usually do this).
As for Buzzbee’s saviour. An innocent helium balloon.
I wish they had been around earlier in the day, because the almost immediate change in Buzzbee was incredible. The moment I tied the ribbon from the balloon to his wrist, he body language completely change and the stress almost fell from his shoulders. On the walk back after the show he was able to tell me that he just needed one thing that he could focus on – sensory overload. Bumble and I had suspected this was the problem but nothing at the time was helping him.
While it took us more time than usually to help the boys regulate themselves, our plans for the weekend weren’t a complete washout. Nanny and grandad’s visit with their puppies on ‘Adoption day’ was a complete success (I think they could probably all have been heard laughing and barking as far up as mars), and while I am sure we were mad, having 3 completely crazy dogs and 2 even nutter boys all in one caravan at the same time, not to mention my dad and Bumble up to their usual mischief (I swear when they get together they are bigger kids than the boys). It was lovely to spend the day enjoying watching the boys have fun and forgetting their troubles for a few hours – even when Buzzbee’s literal understanding made for a very cold and wet (but hysterical) situation, but I will save that for a post later in the week.