Today at the pool I had some interesting experiences.  (Yes, another pool story)

First, my husband went with us.  We had something of an unpleasant weekend.  Saturday was taken up with his mother deciding we were planting somewhere around a billion flowers around our house.  It wouldn’t have bothered either of us so much had she listened to what we’d said we wanted….perennials, so we didn’t have to replant year after year (like she does).  Instead, she came over with a truck bed (Literally, folks) of annuals and bi-annuals and proceeded to start planting them even before I was out of bed and knew she was there.  The only reason I knew she was there (Mark was at work) was Xavier looked out the window and said “Grandpa’s truck!!!!” and rushed the door.  As pay-back for her exploding her flower nursery around my house and taking-up my entire day, she got to watch the kids for a few hours that night while Mark and I went out.  Problem with that was that he’d been up since 4am and I was incredibly sunburned and not feeling the best in the world.  We were back to pick them up shortly after 9pm.  We’d dropped them off around 7pm.  *Sighs*

Sunday didn’t prove to be much better.  We decided, since we’d gotten the “yard work” done on Saturday, it would be a grand day to spend running around, getting the “stuff” we needed for home.  I promised Xavier pickles.  All was well.  Then there was the blow-up in Lowes because Dad told him he couldn’t sit in a spot on the cart that wasn’t made for sitting.  Then there was the blow-up at Walmart because, apparent in his mind, Walmart and “Wally-World” aren’t the same place.  You see where this is going?!?

So, Mark played hookie today in hopes of having a day at home that wasn’t shit.

It actually turned out pretty well, for once!

The day dawned hot and muggy and I decided it would be grand if we all went to the pool.  This is funny because Mark is very anti-pool.  He’s a natural red-head (like any man chooses to be one!) and he swears he must be part vampire.  He “burns up” in the sun…but he gets tired at night………hybrid, he is!!!  On top of that…he never learned to swim.  He’s actually a bit afraid of water that goes chest-level or deeper.  I only got him into Mom’s pool beyond the rope (at approximately 3.5 foot) with a floatie of some sort or another.  He’s convinced he’ll sink…no matter what I do.  I’ve given-up, after 14 years, trying to convince him otherwise and moved on to making sure my kids know how to swim.

So, first, Mark actually went with us.  It was ok because he knew that our local pool has a zero-depth area and lots of stuff Xavier likes to do in the shallow end where he can walk around without having to be held onto.  Secondly…right about the time we left for the pool, when it opened….it started raining.  Mark asked me how it worked…if we’d be refunded if it rained, etc.  I told him (chuckling to myself) that rain doesn’t change anything and if it started to thunder they’d make us get out and wait until it passed….but there was no reason to refund unless there were storms constantly that kept up with lightning and thunder.  We’d be fine and it would be worth the money, I told him.

Turned out I couldn’t have spoken more of the truth!

Xavier isn’t normally a “social” child.  He’s been raised, as I like to say, in captivity.  When we brought him home we were under strict instructions to keep him away from people the first winter, basically until March or later…because of the risk of a respiratory infection on fragile lungs.  Well, we’d brought him home in September….so for the first 7 or 8 months of his life, he never left home for more than a quick run to the grocery store.  He’s never been in daycare.  His only experience with other kids is his sister, really.  We don’t have neighbors out here in the boonies and most of the people I know who DO live in town, their kids are older, too.  He’s never been around kids his age and, honestly, when he IS around them, they scare him because they’re always in “his bubble”…something we’re fighting with him right now at home!

Today at the pool Mark mentioned a “stalker girl” that had me giggling.  She was determined to get Xavier’s attention and to play with him…following him (and Mark) around with her tube and trying to convice Mark to let her take Xavier on the slides and stuff.  Mark, like a champion, told her “No, thank you, he’ll be ok” as Xavier was swiftly walking away in terror over and over again.

Later in the day, though, a little boy was there.  He didn’t get in Xavier’s “bubble”…but followed at a distance, doing everything Xavier did, watching him.  He was a bit bigger, but you could tell they were similar in age by watching them.  Mark finally convinced Xavier that this could be “a friend” and encouraged him to go play.  I’ve never laughed so hard in my life…I’m pretty sure Mark hasn’t, either.

They took to eachother quickly.  Soon, they were running around, splashing eachother (which was hysterical because neither of them liked water in their faces!), and racing to the “fountains” that are along the zero-depth area.  THERE is where I got a bit concered that I might have a bit of a bully on my hands!!!

At first “Z” (as I’ll call him) was the “big man”, aiming the water at Xavier, and playing “keep away” when it came to the Xavier getting the fountain that he wanted.  But soon, Xavier somehow circumnavigated Z and was at the highest pressure fountain they have there.  Z would try to get near him, and Xavier would turn his foot just right on it and spray Z in the face.  I mean, RIGHT in the face!  And the giggle that ensued!!!  I, actually, was waiting for Z’s grandma to say something, ’cause you could tell Xavier was in his glory having a “victim”.  I didn’t intervene because 1) Z had earlier been spraying Xavier in the face and trying to keep him away from some of the built-in toys and 2) I wanted to see what would happen between the two of them.

Z was apparently not the brightest child…or a masochist…because any time Xavier would turn the spray away from him, Z would head right back into it so it was spraying him directly in the face. 

Xavier had made his first “friend”.

As a Mom and Dad, Mark and I couldn’t have been happier.  We got to see Xavier come out of his protective shell and really enjoy another kid who was similar in age (Z is 10 months older, it turns out), we got to see a glimpse of how he might interact with other children (which is a bit scary, thinking he might just look for the upper-hand and take advantage of kids a bit ‘slower’ than him!), and a look at how he does when he’s not directly supervised….he left playing and came to Mark and I to get the ok to go back and play.  Overall, he did REALLY well at “playing” and as Z was getting ready to leave (we were, too, it turns out), they both said “Goodbye, friend” to eachother.  I smiled inside and out.

On the way home, Xavier said, “Z is my best friend I’ve ever known in my life.”  I just smiled, thinking, “Z is the first and only ‘friend’ you’ve known in your whole life, buddy…but you’re getting there!”

As the evening wore on, at home, I was shocked that Xavier didn’t nap…the pool normally equals a nice nap/break for Mom.  Today, I guess it was too exciting to have met a “friend”.  He was all full of it once we’d gotten home and continued until bed time….haven’t heard a peep out of him since then!

I, however, got put to the test!

I was supposed to start my therapy for what I’m assuming is PTSD last Wednesday…however, in the late morning (my appointment was at 1:30pm and I’d rounded up baby-sitting for the kids for it!!!) I got a call that not only had the therapist I was scheduled to see called in sick…so did another one!  They were having to reschedule.  She asked if I was flexible for time.  I laughed and said I kind of had it be, it appeared. 🙂  I told her that I would make arrangements for whatever time they could get me in, but that I would have to ok it, afterwards, with my inlaws who normally watch the kids.  She took the hint, bless her.  She said she had a 5:30 appointment available for the following (as in THIS) Wednesday.  Perfect.  Mark would be home and I wouldnt’ have to worry about anything.

Then, the weather forecast came out.  I’m pretty sure it’s God laughing at me….or assuring me I really DO need therapy.   Wednesday we’re supposed to have some nasty storms again.  The kind I normally run from.  I can’t run.  I can’t look like the world’s biggest pussy!!  I’ve already told them that the reason I’m seeking therapy is a fear of thunderstorms that’s severe enough that I “run states away to avoid them”.  NOW I have to deal with storms the same freaking day, at the same freaking time, my appointment’s supposed to be???  Mark said, “Oh, good. Now they’re be able to see just how bad it is.”  All I’m thinking is…I wonder how I can convince them that it’s perfectly normal to carry a NOAA radio with you at all times??? 

The latest forecast says “wednesday night” for storms…..but you never know what that means.  It can m6pm ean anytime from about 6pm to past midnight.  I’m pretty sure that’s as close as they can figure, too, lately.  I used to have confidence in those guys who worked for the National Weather Service…but lately they’ve actually been putting up forecasts for severe weather that say “Well, we didn’t see THAT coming.”  Does NOT make me feel better, people!!!!

So…my ironic life continues.  Xavier seems to be a bully when he CAN be and my first PTSD (because of a tornado that hit the house I was in 5 years ago) therapy session is supposed to be during another round of severe weather that I’d MUCH rather run from than stay and get therapy for!  Seems “normal” to me!  *Laughs*

Have a great week, everyone!  I know I’ll make it through one way or another, and I’ll see ya on the other side of Wednesday and let you know how my first session went (and whether or not I scared off the therapist!! LOL ).