We celebrated Christmas with anxiety and success but every year it’s the same! Lennon gets anxious about what he will receive. In the past, Christmas was met with shutting down and tantrums. The challenge we face every year is that he has expectations because that is how his brain works. And when those expectations don’t happen, he struggles.
He doesn’t mean to because, at the end of the day, every Christmas is the best Christmas ever.
This year, this year was different.
This year, he had the forethought to know he may need help with his emotions when we open presents. And I give thanks to therapy and his therapist to help us maneuver this.
This year was different because he was able to receive at least one thing he wanted (and expected) but also one thing he didn’t even anticipate but had in fact talked about for a long time.
Just before opening the presents, he looked at me, fidgeting in his seat expressing that he was nervous. It was visible in his face too. He was:
- Nervous about what he was going to get
- Nervous about not getting what he wanted
- Nervous about all the people in the house
And let me add that the people that came over, he knows them, they were not strangers but we are also having new members in our family as Lennon is gearing up to be an uncle for the first time.
I sometimes find myself still looking at him as a little boy in need of help from his mom but then in the moments when he’s sharing his thoughts and feelings and is asking for help, I recognize how much he’s grown.
And even though this year, we have celebrated Christmas with anxiety and success, I can see the support he will continue to need.
But for this moment in time, I am going to just acknowledge his growth and celebrate the milestones he’s achieving no matter how small!