One of our goals with Dude is for him to use appropriate, descriptive words to communicate how he is feeling rather than yelling and becoming physical. On our part we try to read his signals and intervene before he becomes agitated, that is why I volunteer at the school so much at this time of year. I make myself as available as possible because, frankly, his teachers have enough on their plate without having to deal with Random Festive Flip-Outs.
So I should have seen it coming.
Dude has spent the majority of this week at home with me. He has gone to school for rehearsals but other than that he has been at home laying low.This has helped for the most part but I knew something was brewing yesterday morning when he emerged from his room wearing his Grinch t-shirt. He grumbled his way through breakfast and complained that we had to rush to the concert hall early.
Once we got there he perked up and was quite helpful setting the stage but things took a turn when the rehearsal started. With the exception of the song his class dances to, Dude hardly sang and definitely did not crack a smile. When we returned home after the rehearsal he went straight to his room. I didn't see him for a couple of hours.
When he joined us for supper he was still surly and by bedtime he was downright unpleasant to be around. His attitude crossed the line when I told him to get ready for bed and we 'had words'. In his grouching fit he kept saying that he felt bad.
Me - Bad? What do you mean 'bad'? That is not enough information.
Dude - Ugh! Woman, I feel bad. B-A-D! Bad!
Me - Don't call me 'Woman' and bad is not descriptive enough. Do you feel sick, unhappy or grouchy? Explain.
Dude - (deep breath and sigh) Okay, sorry, I don't want to practice for the Christmas concert anymore.
Me - Why?
Dude - Ugh! I am tired of singing Christmas songs. I'd rather have someone throw up in my mouth than ever sing another Christmas song again! Is that enough information?
Yep...more than enough information...and disgustingly descriptive. Good use of your words, Dude...I think.
I am pleased to report that after a good night's sleep The Grinch is gone and Dude is very much looking forward to his concert this evening. Phew!