The theme on WASO is Time keeping and it got me thinking back to the early days when Spud had first come home. I remember having to try and manage visits from friends and family to keep the short, not too many at one time and asking for visitors to be on time. I think most family and friends understood but some didn’t. I tried to explain that Spud could tell the time and one way of building his trust was to be on time. When Spud knew that someone was coming he would start looking out the window 10 mins before. His anxiety levels would increase until he saw the car pull up and even if they were only a couple of minutes late, Spud would pace up and down waiting. From his past he had been let down, had no routine, boundaries or reasons to trust.
As a new mum I tried my hardest to manage his expectations and would often end up pacing with him. Over time his trust has increased and Spud now realises that I will do my best but can’t control the world even though I try! One of Spuds friends mum is always late, she tries her best but timekeeping is just not her thing. She tries but is always late or changes plans at the last minute. Spud accepts that this is her way and copes very well. He will accept the change of plan and the lack of time keeping but only from her.
I hate being late, I hate people being late and this has not changed but having a child has made being on time more difficult but much more important. Why is it when I try to get myself and Spud out to school in the morning does he suddenly remember he has to take a toy/book/t-shirt into school? Or needs to finish watching a cartoon even though he has watched it 10 times? I am always the first in the school playground and Spud will check from his classroom that I am there. He is scared I will not pick him up and although this is getting better with the trust building, I think it will always be one of his aniexties. To help Spud, we are normally the first at a party/outing/activity as Spud finds it easier for people to come in rather than walk in on a room full of people.
Trust has come with planning, explaining and following through what I say, not always easy but essential. Trust has taken time to build.