October is done! We accomplished so much last month, work and fun alike. November will be busy, too, but not quite as crazy. Elijah had a really rough day at school on Friday. We've been keeping a detailed journal of every aspect of his days (nutrition, activity, screen time, sleep, etc), so I have been able to look back and see patterns with certain things. He has slept horribly for the past three nights and the only real difference is that he didn't fall asleep until 7:00 or after on those nights. His bedtime routine is lengthy and sometimes we have potty issues that keep him from falling asleep right away. Instinctively I have always known when he needs to be sleeping and when that doesn't happen, I get stressed out! Last night I knew he needed to be asleep by 6:30 and when that didn't happen I knew the night would be bad. His fitbit showed that he was awake for a lot of the night and up for a solid stretch from 1:15 to almost 3:00. That is the third time that has happened in the past week.
Some behaviors have popped up with Elijah recently that are unique. Suddenly when left alone, he acts like a two-year-old and becomes destructive. I've found cupfuls of water poured onto the floor, soap emptied onto the floor/sink, kleenex boxes thrown into the toilet and peed on, hand towels put in the toilet, toilet paper unrolled and strewn around the bathroom, toys have been thrown across the room, and the list goes on. I literally can not leave him in a room alone anymore. I'm hoping these new behaviors are an effect of feeling overwhelmed and out of control and that once his tank is filled up a bit they will lessen.
He has also been super obsessive about certain things lately, especially times. He has to know exactly how many minutes every given event is going to take. If we watch a show or movie, he needs to know the EXACT number of minutes it will take and he keeps a tally along the way. He knows exactly how many minutes every kids' movie in our home takes to watch. There is a CD we listen to in the car that the boys love and he keeps very close track of what number each song is and how long each is, etc. It gets out of control at times, and I never know if I should feed into his need to constantly know such minute details about everything or if I should try to make it seem like it's not a big deal. I know it is control for him, in a world that makes him mostly feel out of control, so there is definitely a fine line.
Elijah did not start his partial days at 100%, so it is going to take a while for progress to show. I hope his team at school understands this and doesn't expect to see an immediate change. Dan and I are committed to doing EVERYTHING in our power to help him get back to baseline. There are a handful of things we can control, such as nutrition and bedtimes. Today I decided to start our bedtime routine at a ridiculously early time so we can be sure to fit everything in and factor in time for potty issues. Dinner: 4:30. Bath: 5:00. Potty time: 5:30. Jammies/brush teeth/books: 5:45. In bed: 6:00. Asleep (hopefully): 6:30.
There was an awesome moment in church this morning at the end of worship when total peace swept through the room. Everyone was silent and we could all feel HIM right next to us. During that time, I felt like I wasn't even breathing. My body and mind were both so still and quiet and totally receptive. I had some distinct thoughts/messages come to me: the main one was GRACE. We need to have major grace with Elijah during this time because his behaviors are out of his control. Next, I heard the words, "Keep doing what you are doing." Then I thought of music and swimming. Once Elijah is closer to baseline, I think both will be very calming and helpful tools for him. I sense that music is going to be a source of peace for him and we all know how calm the water makes him feel.
I owe Halloween pics! Halloween was fun. It totally wiped E out and keeping him up till almost 8:00 had us paying for it the rest of the weekend, but both boys had a blast and looked as cute as ever. My next post will be Halloween photos, I promise! Thanks for checking in.