Last week I was kinda down. Kevin was in the hospital overnight as we struggle to get his seizures under control. The winter blues had set in and our pretty snow from the blizzard is nothing more than a dirty mess at this point. I did a post about the different ways that the special ed system is stacked against parents, which was very widely read and shared. And, while nothing in that post is untrue and I feel that parents need to be aware, it is a pretty depressing post and it kind of weighed on me all week. I really could have used something to brighten my day.
One thing I did get accomplished last week is gathering all my items for next month’s JBF sale. I love our JBF sales and my stuff usually does really well there. One item that I considered selling was these two Bruder trucks that we have. My MIL got them for a boys several Christmases ago. They are really nice toys, and not inexpensive, but my kids haven’t played with theirs in years. So, I dug them out of the bottom of the one toy bin and had them out. I was wiping them off, making sure that they had all the parts, checking prices online–all that stuff you do to tag stuff for a consignment sale.
When Dan and I sat down to dinner Thursday night (I often feed the boys before he gets home from work, he works late sometimes) there was a little scuffle going on in the living room. Sure enough, Kevin wanted to play with the red Bruder truck (that is technically Brian’s) and Brian was having none of it. “I was going to play with that!” Right, he hasn’t touched it in years. Anyway, we settled that and sat down to dinner.
Friday after school, Brian came home and busied himself in a project. I noticed that I was hearing the sounds of someone using a LOT of Scotch tape. I checked on him and this is what I saw:
I asked him what he was doing and he said, “I’m wrapping a Valentine gift for Kevin.”
My heart just soared! And it got even cuter, when I looked from the one side, I could see that what he was wrapping was the red Bruder truck that they were fighting over the day before. My baby is growing up so fast, maturing….realized that he never plays with this toy and decided to give it to his brother, who really wanted it.
It only got cuter from there. He insisted on hiding this surprise gift from Kevin. He wrote himself a note, telling himself where he hid the gift, and reminding himself to get it out on Sunday morning. All weekend long he asked if he could give the gift early. Finally this morning, we exchanged our Valentines. It’s not a big holiday for us, we just get each other a little token something and a card. Kevin was really happy to have ownership of the red truck. And just when I thought it couldn’t get any better. I read the card that Brian gave to Kevin.
It doesn’t get any better than this! He personalized it, even mentioning the treat that Kevin made in school for Brian. He actually thought about it enough, remembered it at school as part of this project, and directed it towards his brother.
The special needs life isn’t always easy. Siblings have unusual challenges, and Brian is a little trooper. He sometimes is sad that his brother doesn’t play with him and has sometimes said, “I wish Kevin didn’t have autism/seizures!”
But it is days and moments like these….that I know it’s all going to be OK.