Today Ricki missed her ride to school. She has been very “chutpahdik” (“contrary” is the closest I can get to this term….) lately. In general her attitude has been “I will do what I want unless forced not to”, irrespective of what I have told her. Nu, a typical teenager. So, having decided that she can not get away with this, I have been EXTRA careful in drawing the lines which she can not cross. This means that she will not get away with taking soda pop to school (it is reserved for the sabbath), she will not take soya patties either, etc. So I prepared a bottle of diet drink for her, and she (angry that I had not allowed her to take soda-pop “juice”) dumped it out, and was about to take the SAME drink! Oh NO. If you waste, you will not receive. So she was angry, pouting, and missed her ride. So, after waiting 15 minutes, I decided to let her walk to school. (It is not far and she knows the way.) I just wanted to watch from the window to be sure that she was not going to use these few minutes of non-supervision to go to the grocery store (and steal borekas).
I watched discreetly from the shuttered window, carefull that she should not realize that I was observing. She turned right, towards the grocery, but then crossed the street. She was heading for a small side street , and I had NO idea of why she was doing so. This side street is one that goes towards her school (and not the grocery), but it is NOT the normal way of going to school.
So I called out: “Ricki’ where in the world are you going?”
“I’m taking ‘Gili’ to Gan (kindergarden)”.
“Gili” is her imaginary foster- daughter. (“Gili’s mom was killed in an accident and she is very sick in the hospital….”)
Once upon a time I would have been TERRIBLY irked by this.
Once upon a time I thought that other children with Down syndrome do things like this, but my daughter won’t when she is a teen.
Why did I think that I was so much smarter than all those other moms before me?
[Post script: Just to balance this post out, keep in mind that this morning Ricki:
Took a bath on her own
Got dressed by herself
Combed her own hair
Organized her school bag
Prepared drink (in the end, water) ]