About Me

I am a single mom of three amazing boys!  All three of my sons entered my family through adoption.  All three of my boys have developmental disabilities. My oldest son, Matthew has been diagnosed with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome and Bipolar Disorder. David, my middle son, has a genetic condition, he has a duplication on his 15th chromosome which leads to autism like symptoms, seizures and learning challenges. My youngest son, Jacob has learning disabilities. Each of my children bring unique challengs to our family and also bring their own personality and joys to our everyday life!

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Brag on Jacob

Jacob is growing up before my eyes!  I will always believe that Jacob is an old soul in a youthful body.  He can break dance and jive like no other, but his knowledge and understanding of people is deeper than his 6 years.

Over the past few days of vacation there have been numerous times where Jacob has shown his understanding and love for his brothers.  I knew over a year ago, when Jacob asked his speech therapist why David didn't talk much, that Jacob was beginning to understand that there was something different about his brothers.  What I didnt expect was that he would embrace their differences and so effortlessly account for them in his day to day life.

Just a few of the recent times where Jacob has been so much wiser than his 6 years:
1.  Tonight we were writing thank you notes and the boys were drawing pictures on the front of the notes.  David started immediately "scribbling" and seemed frustrated.  Jacob quickly asked David what he wanted to draw  and with each question David would shake his head.  He didn't want to draw a dog, or a car, or a house.  Finally, Jacob said, I'll dot you a rainbow and then you can trace it.

Without me telling him or David saying anything, Jacob realized that David was not able to "draw" like he was and while most of the time it would not bother David, today it was upsetting him.  By Jacob outlining a rainbow for David, David could trace it and feel success and the love of his brother.

As he was tracing the rainbow, David said he needed red.  Jacob scurried off to find a red and asked if David wanted a red crayon or a red marker.  David asked for a marker but when Jacob couldn't find one he brought up a red crayon.  Jacob told David to promise not to break the crayon, and handed it to David.  David promptly took the crayon and broke off the tip.  Jacob looked at David's face, and rather than being angry he just said, " well I guess I have 2 pieces now"

He would have been within his rights to be angry, it would have been understandable, but Jacob understands David gets frustrated, he accepts David for who he is and to him it seemed to be more important that we were coloring as a family.

2.  Matthew is up and down like a yo yo right now.  His mood is changing very quickly.  Jacob, like all little brothers, loves his big brother with all of his heart, but in an instant he can become overwhelmed by Matthew.  He seems to be able to read when matthew is calm, and Jacob takes those moments to play with Matthew, to rough house and to giggle and laugh.  They are building an important bond.  Whenever Matthew is able, Jacob is the first one in the house to get together with him and goof around, and when Matthew is not able to play, Jacob is ok waiting.  He accepts his big brother for exactly who he is, and appreciates and giggles and laughs when they are playing together.

3.  For Hanukah I gave each of the boys a certificate for a night out with me.  I had a babysitter the other day and an hour before my friends were ready to go out so I explained to Jacob and David that I could take both of them out or I could take one of them now and one of them later.  Jacob quickly said, "let's go together" while David said, " I want to go alone".  As I explained to them that both would get a turn, Jacob quickly suggested that I should go out and that David and he would go out another night.

It was obvious that Jacob was ok staying home with David and the babysitter, and that he was ok not going on a date that night, but that he was not ok staying home without David, so he quickly reminded David that the babysitter had great movies and they dashed off together to pick a movie!  This meant I got an hour to myself, to bask in the love that my 6 year old shows to all of us.

Some may say that Jacob is burdened with eventually caring for his two older siblings on some level.  I choose to say that Jacob is going to become an amazing person as he continues to grow up in our house.  He has learned compassion, understanding and patience at a very young age because he has had to.  He has seen his brother struggle with mental health issues and loves him no matter what- this is more than can be said for many in our society.

He is a 6 year old, but so often he thinks about things in a way that is more generous than many much older.  I am so proud to be his mommy and to see him growing into such an amazing boy!

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