“Pee and put on your shoes,” I instructed one of the boys, while brushing the other one’s teeth. Benjamin stopped to swing on the bathroom door. “Cut it out,” I snapped. “Let me get your teeth brushed; fool around on your own time.”
Getting out the door is always a hassle. Too many elbows and knees crowing into our tiny little mudroom. It doesn’t help that the powder room door swings into the mudroom.
We pulled up in front of the elementary school, our first stop of the morning, and Zach reached down to unbuckle the minute the car was in park. He shoved past Benjamin, anxious to be with his friends. We stood in the kindergarten line, and one of the kids came up to me. “Ben hit me,” he reported.
I sighed. “I’m sure he did. Benjamin, do not hit your brother’s friends.” I knew full well he would continue to do so, but I am always charmed by the fact that these six-year-olds hold tight to the delusion that I have some control over my child’s behavior. I’d hate to let them down.
The teacher came out and I leaned down to kiss Zach goodbye, but he was already halfway into the classroom. “Come on, dude,” I said to his brother. “Let’s get you to school.”
Around the corner, at the preschool, Benjamin took off the minute we hit the play yard. When I tried to get a kiss goodbye, he turned around and half-blew me one before running off with his friends.
I picked up Lilah, who had gamely come along to assist in all the morning drop-offs. “All right, kiddo, let’s get you to the doctor.”
It was a pneumonia follow-up, and her lungs checked out fine. “But, there’s something else,” I told the doctor. “In the morning, or after her nap, or even when she doesn’t want to go to bed at night, she comes out of her room and just stands there.” I paused and the doctor shot me a blank look. “I mean, she just stands there. She doesn’t cry. She doesn’t speak. She just stands there, sucking her thumb. She knows how to talk, she just doesn’t do it. This morning, when I got out of the shower, she was standing silently in the hallway, waiting for me, without waking up anyone else.”
“Well, that is unusual,” the doctor replied.
“And she sits there at dinner and… eats. I mean, just eats. She doesn’t say anything, unless she wants more of something.”
“Does she understand you?”
“Oh, yeah. Completely. And she definitely has words. Is something wrong with her, or are we just used to her brothers, who never shut up?”
“Well, I’ll grant you it is unusual, but I don’t think anything is wrong. She just has extreme patience.”
And there you have it – the first time any Rosenbaum has ever been diagnosed with extreme patience.