Monday, January 25, 2010

This post is blatantly honest.

It's no secret that Ouro Branco is my "tough one."

He's the one who exhausts me. The one I get annoyed with the most. The one who always gets to go on "dates with Dad," simply because I need a break.

Is it because he's three? Or is it just the way he is? My memory of Little Prince at this age is fading ....

He drives me nuts a good portion of the time.


This fills me with guilt.


I feel like less of a mother because of these sometimes terrible, horrible, no-good very-bad feelings I have towards him. As if my love were conditional. (Is it?) Requiring. (Do I?)

Look what happened to Joseph when his father started comparing him to his brothers.


I love this baby boy. Oh, I love him fiercely. I love him every ounce as much as my other two. Sometimes, because I have to work harder at it, it feels like more. And it hurts me when others complain about him or have a hard time with him. Even though I feel the same way.

And he loves me. Oh, he loves me. He wants every minute to hug me, to hang on me. To beg me to play with him "just five more minutes." To sit next to me and just be with me. I don't deserve this beautiful boy.


So we've been investigating his behavior lately. Because I've known for a while that something just isn't quite right.

And guess what.

He is partially deaf.

His ears are so filled with fluid that everything he hears sounds like it's underwater. Hence, speech impediments. Hence, frustration. Hence, sensitivity and quick anger.

I feel ... relieved. Validated. To know that there really is a problem. That it's a fixable problem. That he can get help and things are looking up.

And I feel ... remorse. For yelling at him when he didn't respond the first time. For losing it when I had to repeat something the tenth time. For gritting my teeth every time he freaked out about something he probably couldn't understand.

Because I love this boy. I love him so. I am his mother.

And I'm so glad he's mine.

29 comments:

Nikki said...

Aww. What a bitter sweet post. Makes me sad and happy at the same time. Maybe because I know that feeling oh-too-well.

MommyJ said...

Ok, first of all, holy cuteness! He's adorable, one hundred percent.

I love your honesty. It's a beautiful post and a testament to how sincerely you really DO love this boy, and your others because of raw and real your emotions are.

Lara said...

You are an amazing mother. Really. We all get frustrated with our children, and I am so thankful you were able to figure out what was really going on with him.

I have one that I have a more difficult time dealing with than my other two as well. I feel major guilt over it all the time. But, I'm working on it.

Jocelyn Christensen said...

I shouldn't have to cry this early on a Monday morning...but thank you for sharing this!

Just so you know, my husband's brother is def, and his family didn't realize it for a VERY long time either...explained a lot!

Tobi said...

I'm glad you found an answer. That's huge. I'm sure things will go a little more smoothly now. Huzzah for modern medicine!

Fig said...

I'm so glad too. Things will only get better from here, right?

Now quit beating yourself up, immediately.

Brittany Ann said...

You are such a good mommy. Everybody gets frustrated, everybody has their days. I'm glad that you found out about the problem, though. What's the treatment for something like this?

Just SO said...

I bet that will be wonderful for him and you when they can take care of that. I have difficult times with each of my kids and none of them have fluids in their ears.

Kimberly said...

I love your blatantness.

I struggled with Emma in similar ways (alas, her hearing was fine - we checked) and had all those same conflicting feelings. Worst is the feeling that I should apologize for her to people, because she is so boisterous and so sensitive. She lives life with her whole heart and reigning her in...well...it's hard to want to even if it means she exceeds the socially accepted norm sometimes.

Anyway, I'm so glad you found the source of his frustration! Same thing happened with my twin nephews. Now that it's fixed they're still themselves. Still mischievous and whatnot, but other aspects of their behaviour have improved SO much.

Kazzy said...

What a handsome boy! I am glad you have something to work with to feel like you can make some changes in his response to you, etc.

I have decided that even though we completely love each of our children, that it might be a natural thing to have our personalities match better at certain times with certain kids. I feel that way about my siblings too. You are a great mom. I can tell.

Harmony said...

I don't know why I'm crying right now, but your post did it to me. I'm so happy you found the reason, and that, hopefully, things will be better for him. Who would have knows it was his hearing? And to know that poor OB was having those problems; maybe that's what's tearing me up. But you ARE a wonderful mother. Validated or not.

Tessa Nelson said...

I love this post. Thank you for just being you, for being so honest! I love it! AND I'm so glad you figured it out and it IS fixable!

wonder woman said...

What a relief to have a diagnosis. My SIL recently with through something similar with her son, though he has more than partial deafness.

For the record, my second has been more difficult than my first, too. And I'm pretty sure he's not deaf. (I just said his name softly and he responded.) He has more of a temper, but is also more likely to be happy for no reason. And oh so affectionate. And a tease. And always begging for me to "be with him."

Danya said...

I am so glad you found out what was going on! The next year will bring many changes for your little guy.

When my son's hearing was evaluated when he was 2, they figured out that he wasn't processing sounds in his right ear. He could follow instructions when spoken in his left ear, but when they isolated sound in his right ear, he couldn't do it. They described it as "dyslexia for hearing".

Hearing affects so many things. I feel relief for you. Good job, mom!

Megan said...

Those beautiful big eyes of his are there to help compensate for his ears--and to help you, as his mother, fall in love with him through his difficulties. Thankfully, there's something to diagnose and not just a difficult boy. He is still golden! *hugs*

Melissa Bastow said...

I'm trying to write a lovely heart-felt comment but I'm being distracted because they're talking about bracheosaurus poop on Dinosaur Train. It's hard to lovely or heart-felt with a massive poop conversation going on in the background...

But really, I am so glad that you found the source. I am also glad that it can be fixed. And that life will get easier for both of you. Granted, he'll still be him, and push your buttons, but having better hearing will help. And at least now you understand it. Which I think changes things the most.

And stop feeling guilty, a mom's job is like 97% frustration - no need to fling brontosarus poop at yourself.

DeNae said...

For us it was ADD with #4, and it's still a struggle. Just know that he won't even remember these early years of figuring things out. Meet him on the terms that are best for him (notice I didn't say "his terms" or "your terms"), take breathers when you need them, and keep plugging along.

And the worst thing you can do to yourself is to cave to the guilt of the "comparison game". FAIR isn't everyone getting the same thing. FAIR is everyone getting what they need.

Including you.

Perpetual Mommy Exhaustion said...

You know what? When other mothers are brave and tell the truth, it makes the realities of our lives a little easier to bear. We know we're not alone.
My first is really challenging. I often suspect that's because he's my first and I don't know what I'm doing.
I'm just proud of you all the time for letting random strangers see into your heart because it is such a gift to me.

Jill said...

I struggle with my oldest and have nothing like your excuse. It's me. I can imagine your relief...

Becky said...

Thank you for being blatantly honest. It's good for me.

And second, tomorrow my own boy is having his third set of ear tubes put in because otherwise, the fluid builds up and it's like he's walking around with ear plugs. So I understand the yelling and the frustration and the wondering because I went through it too. But at the end of the day, problems or not, I love him. Because he's mine.

Hang in there.

Erin said...

Ahhh, my Ethan is on his fourth set of tubes because as soon as the previous ones fall out, his ears fill with fluid and he can't hear anything. It is frustrating for both him AND us. Good luck to you.

Mommadj5 said...

OB knows he is loved and cherished. Trust me on this one..he will remember the sweet hugs and kisses and time spent with him and never even think about the "tough times". You are one of the greatest Moms I know, and I am not biased at all :-)

Melanie J said...

Is it wrong to say, "Yay for partial deafness"? Does it help if I say my parents were both deaf? Or that the exact same thing happened to me as a child and fixing it made everything more lovely for everyone?

Have fun in the making-things-better process. It's good to have answers.

Mrs. M said...

Glad there's a name for what's wrong and it's treatable:)

Sarah said...

One of my favorite things about blogging is it lets us see how 'normal' we are, especially when we don't feel like it.

Liz said...

awww...I just happened to see your new blog and take a minute and read this post. Glad you found some answers and can deal with the problems so much better now. You are a great mom. Don't forget that.

gigi said...

So glad things got figure out! Blessings to you all.

Qait said...

Aww, you had me nearly in tears! What a sweet boy! I can really relate to all of those feelings, somehow.
I feel relieved for both you and Ouro Branco. I imagine it's been difficult for him, too, at times.
I love blatantly honest posts.

Steph @ Diapers and Divinity said...

Your description sounds a lot like my Clark. I took him in for a hearing test and they confirmed my worst fears: Nope, not deaf, just 2. He's growing up now and is much more delightful. :)