Daisy And Me People I meet when on my walks with Daisy

23Nov/140

Encouragemnet

Recently we’ve seen great improvements in Fred. It’s probably that the cumulative effect has become more noticeable than it been any sudden change in him. Habit has played a big part, the daily routine, not letting him slide into bad practice and encouragement. Not long after Ruby was born someone said to me that encouragement is the greatest thing you can do for a child. Certainly with Fred we can see the effects; the fact that Ruby is wonderful may be down in part to our encouragement, who knows?

Not too long ago I couldn’t have let Fred alone in my office. Every drawer would have been emptied, every pen left uncapped and every piece of paper scribbled or drawn on. Last week though I did leave him. Fred had come up to see what I was doing, it was early evening and I think he wanted to spend time with his Dad rather than the girls. While I worked he took things out and rummaged about.  After I’d finished I said that I was going back downstairs...

“I’m staying here,” Fred said.

“Can I trust you not to take out anymore stuff and to tidy up afterwards?” I asked “and not to go near that bottom drawer?

“Yes my Dad,” he answered, almost annoyed at me.

“I trust you.”

“Yes my Dad.”

Later he came down and watched a program before going up to bed.  A couple of hours later I went up to check the room. Everything was as tidy as I would have left it myself. Things were put back in the right drawers and the bottom drawer looked untouched. I was genuinely surprised, delighted and even a little emotional at such a demonstrable sign Fred’s improvement. In bed I told him how proud I was of him and he just said:

“I know, now leave me alone I’m trying to sleep.”

In all of his activities there are improvements. Fred’s schoolwork is coming on, though after seizures he slips back a bit which is a real curse. On Monday the school called saying that Fred was unwell. I went over to asses him. Ms O’Connor and Denise were a bit sceptical but we all know not to take a chance which is why they called. Fred looked a bit pale but not too bad. Maybe because the cluster had been comparatively mild that it hadn’t cleared fully. To emphasise the point Fred moaned and groaned while moving closer to the door. To be safe I took him home.

At home he went to bed and slept for a few hours. He woke about 2pm looking better and even sat up to have a chicken sandwich in bed. Bliss. To add to it he got the laptop and watched a few Ben 10 episodes while I worked at my desk. Later when Ruby came home she snuggled up to him for a while and by dinner time Fred declared:

“I think I’m better now.”

The next morning he went off to school and performed to his best. All the teachers were delighted with him and at homehe flew though his homework, impressing his mother on the way. Sometimes we just have to go with it, listen to Fred and let him have his time when needed. A different type of encouragement.

By Friday Fred was fed up with school but went because it was the last day. There was also a cake sale as a fund raiser and Lisa was up early baking. At about 10am I went over with the Tupperware’s of cream and chocolate buns. Not cupcakes, these are proper buns that taste delicious. Just as I came in the gate Fred walked around the corner with Ms O’Se and a big smile broke on his face when he saw me with the cakes. With the smile getting bigger he took the Tupperware and walked in with to the cake sale.

“Oh excuse me these are from my Mummy,” he said struggling with the boxes, Ms O’Se and Denise standing watchfully over him.

Afterwards I asked him how he got on.

“Great,” he beamed, “I had four cakes.”

Yesterday I was to go away and Friday evening I asked Fred take charge, that I trusted him to be good and not to be fighting with his Mum or his sister.

When leaving in the morning I said it again, adding a quote from Voltaire...

“With great power comes great responsibility,”

He nodded in assent.

I got home about 8pm and Fred ran out to greet me.

“I was great at being in charge,” he said after giving me a big hug.

Now we just have to hope he doesn’t get too power hungry.

 

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Posted by John Verling

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