There is such a huge difference between ‘can’t’ and ‘won’t.’ Basically trying and failing or refusing to try at all. Cooper refuses to try and it makes me freaking insane. As a parent it is heartbreaking to see your child try and fail. And trust me, I know this firsthand. It seems like every week we are doing one or two evaluations and I watch as cooper fails it all. And then add in the fact that his 15 month old brother is toddling along side him doing it all. But there is another level to this. A level that I couldn’t put my finger on for the longest time. And I guess it took watching Sawyer to figure it out. Cooper refuses to try almost everything; especially when forced.
And what I am slowly starting to understand is that until he wants to try and learn we are at a standstill. I feel like I am at a super dramatic crossroad in my 3 year olds life. He has to decide that he wants to learn. I can’t make it. Hell, I can’t make this kid do anything. And his defense mechanism when he is being forced to try and activity is to throw his body back, go limp and scream. It’s paralyzing to me.
I HATE this part about my son. I hate it so much I could scream. I have always been honest here and I am not going to stop now. I don’t hate that things are hard for him. I don’t hate the fact that he doesn’t talk. I don’t hate his developmental delays. Hell, I don’t even hate the evaluations. All these things are heartbreaking and crushing but I can accept them and hope to conquer them. What I hate more than anything is his inability to try. I hate that we have a god damn village built to try and help him and he doesn’t care. I hate that he hate’s everything. Just try kid. Let us teach you.
Have Apraxia. Hell, have delays up the wahzoo. Just freaking try. Please.
At one extremely low point in this journey I brought Cooper to the pediatrician and sobbed in the exam room. I asked her to tell me what was wrong with him. I actually said, and I quote, “What’s wrong with him? It is something medically or is he just an asshole? I have to know.” She burst out laughing. She hugged me and sat down next to me and talked with me for over an hour. At this point she told me that besides the language delay she didn’t see any red flags so we most likely had an extremely challenge, strong willed child on our hands.
There is no point in potty training until he ‘wants’ to use the potty. There is no point in trying to force language (not that we could anyway) until he ‘wants’ to communicate. So, a standstill it is. We are doing this shift in our home life where we do fun stuff with Sawyer and ‘hope’ that Cooper joins in. And I would say he usually does. Or he at least sits back and watches. I think that is all his brain will allow at this point. So, I guess, we take it or leave it.