Thursday, September 30, 2010

From the Wolf Den: Breakdown, or Breakthrough?

Our family's journey through Asperger Syndrome and the ancillary issues of our son have consisted of single steps into and out of agony and ecstacy. We are up, down, sideways and ass backwards by turn, wanting to know and yet not know what lies inside Wolf's head. Therapy has, after two years, accomplished little. And we didn't know why. Until Thursday.

Therapist B had taken a new tack with his kids, appointing them as chairmen of their own family therapy, hoping that the sense of control would lead to a greater opportunity for sharing information and/or communication. Why not? Nothing else had worked to this point, Yukon and I figured.

Ever heard the sound of silence over a phone line 3,000 miles away? Let me describe it to you. Crickets. Buzzing. Fingers drumming on the table. We were going nowhere. I gritted my teeth and sucked down some more coffee.
At five minutes to the hour, when Yukon had gone upstairs to ready Bear for school and I was pacing the room, phone on speaker, ready to open my mouth and let loose the receiving end of two years of not-too successful family therapy. I was tired, I was ticked, and I was ready to throw up my hands and say the almighty What.Ever.

With a swiftness I could hear in the air sucked into his lungs, Wolf yelled something that took the air out of mine. "AM I A MISTAKE?!" But it was not directed at me, or Yukon. It was directed at his father.

Apparently there have been conversations, discussions to which I have not been privy, between the two. Promises promised, statements made, and disclosures revealed that are not appropriate for a teenager with impulse control challenges whose relationship with the man who provided DNA has been tenuous at best since infancy. A man who, we now believe, has similar issues to Wolf but has denied responsibility.

The one hour turned into two as I answered questions as best I could during the emotional storm that followed, knowing full well the time had come to collaborate with CHYC staff on any future communication with Wolf's dad.

It was a beautifully tragic moment. Tragic that our child feels such painful awareness of the abandonment of his biological parent. But beautiful in that Yukon is there to pick up the pieces and bind them together with grace. He is, in fact, going to take my place on this upcoming visit. Wolf needs his forever dad. And as much as I would love to hold my own son in my arms, I know Yukon's are the ones he needs more right now.

Not a breakdown. On the contrary, a breakthrough. A big one. No mistake.


Island Lodge said...

Made me cry this morning. I have a feeling this is huge. Thank God for blessings like this moment - painful as they are.

Mindy O'Neall said...

This is a really beautiful testament, E. Thank you for sharing. Your strength is inspiring.

dorothy said...

No - no mistake.