The disruptive kid in the Christmas pageant...was my own

The disruptive kid in the Christmas pageant...was my own

What upset me most about my five year old’s behavior in the Christmas pageant? Well…

To preface this, if we all threw our parenting problems in a pile, I would pull out “kid with ADHD” again. Of all the things, there are way worse challenges that face my fellow parents.

My disappointment yesterday comes from the age-old mantra: “I know your potential. I’ve seen you accomplish this. I know you can do better. So…why didn’t you?”

He knew it, and he chose to be silly. I witnessed him singing his songs and doing his movements during rehearsal time, in the car, and at home. He knew them forwards and backwards. Yesterday, he sang “poop” during most of the songs. It sounds funny as I write it, but…

He took away from the other kids. This is the part that brings me the most guilt. I was the director. Should I have removed him? Was that fair to the other kids? I know the answer is “no.” But I also know the scene I would have invoked had I removed him. Perhaps he didn’t want to be in a show? Except…

He performed in his park district show last week and hit all of his marks. That was a 15 minute performance, up on stage, and so much more involved than a seven minute church pageant. So, what happened this week? This child of mine is so full of contradictions that I’m left with confusion, frustration, and doubt on so many occasions.

I’m worried about the most basic of human needs: will others love my child? I see the looks, the raised eyebrows, the kids scooch away from him. And…I’m his mom. I know how hard it is, in these moments, to respond with love. If it’s challenging for me, how hard is it going to be for others to respond with kindness?

My husband and I are left with the realization that maybe I can’t be the one to volunteer to help with his activities. Okay: point taken. But then, by removing myself from time with him, is that showing him love, especially if I continue to volunteer with his brothers? What if that particular activity will only happen if I’m the one to lead it?

As an educator, I know that the process is more important than the product. Did he learn something? Yes. Did he spend fellowship time with other kids? Yes. Did he have fun? Yes. However…

As a parent, what is better: to do something with/for my kid to grant him an experience, or to guard my own mental health/sanity by not doing it? What does Mommy look like after something like that? Because I’ll tell you that yesterday, I was pretty deflated. 

If you’ve gotten to the end of this post, I thank you for reading. And if you see “that kid,” please send a little kindness and love his (mom’s) way.

Filed under: Parenting

Tags: kids with ADHD

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