Sunday, September 13, 2009

Oscar and the abstract cactus...

I do remember one thing.It took hours and hours but..
By the time I was done with it,
I was so involved, I didn't know what to think.
I carried it around with me for days and days..
Playing little games Like not looking at it for a whole day
And then..
looking at it.
To see if I still liked it. I did.
I repeat myself when under stress.
I repeat myself when under stress.
I repeat myself when under stress.
I repeat myself when under stress.
I repeat..
The more I look at it, The more I like it.
I do think its good.
The fact is..No matter how closely I study it,
No matter how I take it apart,No matter how I break it down,
It remains consistent.
I wish you were here to see it.
I like it.

From "Indiscipline" by King Crimson

Two weeks of school down..sort of. Three days the first week and four the second. Tomorrow begins the first time they will be going for the five full days. Hallelujah! I say this not so much for me-but for them. My kids need a pattern-a consistent pattern. It gives them a feeling of control knowing exactly what they are going to be doing. Having the odd Monday or Friday off, really throws them. They don't know what to do with it, and in turn..I don't know what to do for them. They love school. They love it so much that I can use taking it away as a threat. "Fine, don't clean up this can stay home from school tomorrow and do it instead." "NO!! Mama..I'll clean it now..don't make me miss school!" "Well..'s your choice..." Sometimes I feel down right evil. But, I get over it.

Out of the four of them, change affects Oscar the most. School to Oscar is the ultimate in order.
He has a schedule, a plan, and as long as you follow it-he is one happy boy. If you change it without ample warning (by ample warning I mean-notifying him of the change at least fifty or so times..having him repeat it back to you and putting it in writing-in triplicate) my boy loses it. I can't say that I blame him. He took the time to memorize the schedule that they made, to the point that he knows it forwards and backwards....even "offering" his help should they somehow forget something. He deserves a warning or fifty thousand, if it is going to change.

This year, getting back into the rhythm of things hasn't been so easy. He hasn't had a full week, hasn't gotten to do the things he likes yet (library and music), his teacher has already been absent once..he just doesn't feel settled. It is taking its toll. He is one grumpy boy. Really grumpy. So grumpy that he is taking his mood out on everyone.I did try to talk to him about it..but sometimes, talking to Oscar, especially about his feelings..well...sometimes I feel like I need a guide book, or at least a translator. "Hey bud, what's going on? You know it's not o.k. to hit your sister." "Yes but..but ...but...but..." "But what?" "but..but..but.." "Is it school?" "No!"

"Then what's going on? You seem very grumpy" "I'm ANGRY!" "What are you so angry about?" "I'm angry at the cactus!" "Your angry at...the cactus...What cactus?" "It is sharp and it pokes people." "Wait a second...are we talking about a cactus plant? Is there a cactus at school?" "The cactus pokes hurts them!" "O.k...I'm a little confused there a real cactus?..or do people make you think if cacti?" "Can we be done talking Mama?"..sigh.."O.K- just remember that we don't hit people in this's o.k. to be angry..but we don't take it out on other hitting!..O.K.??" "No hitting..o.k. mama"

Sigh...I'm not quite sure what Oscar meant about the cactus. I do know that the message about not hitting got through. But the cactus? It could in fact mean that Oscar is equating the change of schedule, the uncertainty of his day to day activities-to being poked. A cactus is a great analogy. Only time will tell. I know this much though-I won't know until I know. I can't tell you how many times I have patted myself on the back-thinking I figured something he said out, only to be proven wrong. So until open house night at school, when I know for sure that there isn't a giant cactus wreaking havoc on the students..I'll keep my speculations to myself.


Thelma said...

Sure enough, Kathleen, ain't we all felt poked by the giant cactuses in our lives? Dang fine metaphor. And if'n there is a cactus, whoobuddy, it'd be going home in my giant purse!

kathleen said...

Yes, I am for getting rid of the giant cactus..I really wouldn't be suprised if there really was one..I never try to second guess my Oscar.

jazzygal said...

Well I'm curious. I'm dying to know where he got the cactus from! It is a great analagy, maybe they talked about cacti in school, or in a TV program and that put it in his head.
It's so hard for them to put how their feeling into words, isn't it? Great that he could tell you he was angry though, as opposed to grumpy. Now, to get him to express the "why" bit!!

Wiiboy hates school, so he says but like Oscar he craves the routine, he just doesn't realise it! xx Jazzy

kathleen said...

Hi Jazzygirl! Open house is at school tonight-I will update everyone as to whether there actually is a cactus there or not!
Yes! the concept of does one explain that?