Adventures Of Fatherhood – March 15, 2019

Adventures Of Fatherhood – March 15, 2019

Listening to Beckett sing in the shower is a highlight of my day.

If I have the time, I will sit outside the bathroom and listen to him bounce from song to song. He typically sings a few lines he knows and then ad libs a bit because he can’t remember all the words. When he starts making up his own lines, it gets hilarious.

A recent favorite shower song is “Shallow” by Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper. We watched the movie last weekend and let him watch the song performed at the Oscars.

The lyrics he was later adapting in the shower to his own style was the line, “In all the good times I find myself longing for change
And in the bad times I fear myself. I’m off the deep end, watch as I dive in. I’ll never meet the ground
crash through the surface, where they can’t hurt us We’re far from the shallow now.”

In his 10-year-old mind, he twisted the lyrics to more of his interests, singing, “In all the good times, I find myself smelling like poop. In all bad times, I poop during school and at home. I’ll never poop through the surface, where they can’t hurt me. We’re far from the pooping now.”

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When he came out of the shower and saw me sitting on the steps outside the bathroom, he asked if I could hear him singing. I wondered with him whether his creative take on the lyrics could provide a future career. He remarked it would be his dream job. He thought I should record him the next night and send it to Lady Gaga.

I made sure I was busy the next night.

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Carson’s social graces remain a work in progress.

Most of the time it appears Carson is not paying attention, but the reality is he knows everything going on. He’s cognitively sharp. That’s why it’s such a mystery why our special needs kid doesn’t seem to grasp certain things he does are entirely inappropriate in a social setting.

For one, Carson ignores people. It’s rude, but I don’t think he means it that way. He’s either uncomfortable with the attention, which oftentimes is just a “Hi, Carson,” or embarrassed for a reason unknown to us. There are times when he simply is more obsessed with what he’s doing, such as tracking his steps on his FitBit app on his iPad, than what’s happening around him.

Other times his social aloofness is more pronounced, confirming he just doesn’t care what the outside world thinks. He’s not above picking his nose in public, pulling his shirt up to scratch his belly at a restaurant, kicking the chair in front of him repeatedly in a movie theater and even taking his shirt off in an arcade if he perceives it will improve the result. He’s also perfectly content walking around with the remnants of his lunch all over his face all day. If a parent tries to wipe his face at a time that’s inconvenient to him, he will be uncooperative to the point it’s a two-person job.

In many ways, our special needs son is just like everyone else. He likes to do what he wants when he wants. He’s just more stubborn and inflexible than most. When pushed to cooperate against his will, such as removing his finger from his nose while the server takes our order, the results can be ugly. He has been known to throw a tantrum, which is ugly.

Although I am guilty of overthinking things when it comes to Carson, I have come to realize he embraces his aloofness. I actually think plays us, using his disability to curry favor or get his way. Beckett picks up on this a lot. Most of the time he’s good with it because he understands, but there are instances when the typical 10-year-old boy comes out of him.

Both boys have really picked up basketball. They both love it. That’s fine by me because it’s my favorite sport.

Carson spends about an hour shooting baskets on our hoop before school each morning. It’s a gated area and is perfect as an early morning activity. It gets the edge off.

Not being the early morning type at all, Beckett prefers to play after school. Carson wants to play as well. The problem is they are at different skill levels and don’t always play well together.

During a recent game of “Horse,” Carson had a poor reaction to losing and kicked Beckett in the leg as he ran by. He was clearly trying to trip him. Since that’s unacceptable, I told Carson basketball was over for him. As I was walking him back, Beckett remarked how Carson wins that way because I couldn’t stay and play with him. Carson laughed and Beckett reacted poorly in kind, hitting him in the back.

A battle broke out, resulting in me picking up Carson and throwing him over my back. As I ran him home, I could hear Beckett saying, “stop smiling Carson, it’s not funny.”

Yep, Carson is aware of what’s happening at all times. I had been manipulated, but there were no other options at the time.

Beckett later asked me if I was aware how unfair that was to him. I told him I was and apologized, leading to a game of 9 p.m. hoops with just us.

About The Author: Steven Green

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The writer has been with The Dispatch in various capacities since 1995, including serving as editor and publisher since 2004. His previous titles were managing editor, staff writer, sports editor, sales account manager and copy editor. Growing up in Salisbury before moving to Berlin, Green graduated from Worcester Preparatory School in 1993 and graduated from Loyola University Baltimore in 1997 with degrees in Communications (journalism concentration) and Political Science.