I’ve mentioned before, but if you’re new here, I’ll play it again Sam. Ok enough with the in-jokes that amuse me only.
Sam, our seven year old is/has Aspergers. This can be so different for every kid, but mainly with Sam, we see him zone in on one particular fixation. For years, it has been trains. And to be honest, Trains have not been completely wiped off the obsession map just yet.
I mean, who could forget our Planes, Trains and Automobiles adventure up the Train Museum in Ipswich for his 6th birthday. At the crack of dawn, we descended on the local train station (he was already in heaven) to take a trip to Brisbane City. Then we caught another train to Ipswich. Hell unto itself. Then, 3 hours later, we boarded a bus that took us to the Museum. All whilst Jack who was about 2, went tantrum city on our ass and decided he’d like nothing better than to show us how far his lungs could actually stretch.
That aside, the train museum in Ipswich is certainly fun for the kidlets. Getting there and back – not so much.
Anyway, of late, well since Mum’s funeral, Sams major obsession has been death and everything that goes along with it. Ashes, coffins, funerals, you name it; he wants to chat about it. And not at the most appropriate times. For instance, the other day we were discussing at kindy a kid who had the flu. His first response to the mother I was talking to “Did she die?”
Kindy Mum: “No, she was just a little bit sick”.
Sam: “So you never go to the coffin stage then?”.
Kindy Mum: “Um, no” Awkward pause and exit stage left.
See, rightly so, Mum’s funeral was the first one Sam ever attended. At the beginning of the service, he seemed to be OK. He chose to sit with my best friend and her children which was fine with me. The service started and I turned to check he was OK. His crushed, crying face was all I could see. He completely lost it, so I went up and brought him back to the front with us. He continuously sobbed throughout the entire process. Which in turn, made the rest of those attending, equally lose it. How much more heartbreaking does it get?
He has often spoken about the funeral. Often had a cry. He has the four songs that were at Mum’s service on his iPod. Most notably - Isn’t She Lovely by Stevie Wonder. He often busts that out randomly in public places.
When we got his boggle eyed, black goldfish, Seabushy, he kissed the bowl on the first night and said “See you Seabushy, I Hope you don’t die during the night”. Then he turned to me and said “If he does Mum, can we have a funeral?”
Eventually, well, two weeks later, Seabushy did die and we did have a burial in the backyard and he provided a private service complete with music by Michael Buble’ (I just haven’t met you yet). What gives?
He asks about Ashes and what we will be doing with Grandmas. He asks about where the Coffins come from. He asks me if Grandmas feet got cold before she died. Holy batwings, batman.
I guess my only worry is this will become just an obsession and not a reality to him. Does he really get what it all means? I think he does. Sometimes I’ll find him having a little cry in his room. Often he says he’s just missing Grandma or Seabushy. Which I think is lovely. He can just let it out when it hurts too much. I admire that to be honest.
So I’m hoping his next obsession is keeping shit off his bed (currently hordes everything he receives on the end of his bed) or learning his 12 times tables. I do not however, wish for a Michael Buble' obsession, which is quite on the cards.
But as always with Sam, we’ll just go along for the ride.