Ben…eleven years old (and getting big and strong), and his little brother, Johnny (6) on their 1st day of school (Ben went to a special school)! February 17,1973
I found this in reading back through my journals about Ben. This one was dated February 17, 1973. It reminded me of how blessed we are that at age 53, Ben can still come home for visits and do SO well…being calm, happy, gentle, and loving. I only share it because it brought back many memories of how we have leaned on Jesus all the way, and He has never failed us. Also, I thought that many of you out there are still dealing with this behavior daily, and I want you to know that it CAN get better. Ben still has his “moments,” and we could not handle them when they DO happen…but he is a fine man 99 and 9/10% of the time, and for that…we are SO thankful!
From my 2/17/73 Journal: I have had another experience today. I tried to take the kids to the movie again. We went to see “The Courage of Lassie.” Ben had been in a good mood all day and seemed to want to go to the show. He got into the station wagon, waited patiently while I got ready, and stood in line with us at the movie, etc. We got our popcorn and got through about one hour of the movie. Then, he started the, “May I go to the bathroom”…“May I get a drink” routine…and it really is a routine! I know because I took him to the restroom (just in case)…and let him get a drink of water too. When we got back to our seats, he still started jerking his head and making strange noises…making it quite clear that there was not going to be any reasoning with him. I tried to tell him, “We have to be quiet in the show,” “Watch Lassie,” etc….but he started to get more upset and pulled his coat down over his head. A little girl about three years old was sitting next to him, and I didn’t want to take ANY chances on him hitting at her (or biting her) like he does Johnny, so I got up and left with him. Thank God, Maureen was there with Johnny so they could stay and see the rest of the show. When I got Ben out into the lobby, I tried to explain to him that Maureen and Johnny weren’t ready to go yet and he was ruining it for everyone, and that I was ashamed of him. That did NO good…he jerked and fussed…and a man standing there watched him very curiously! I went on and took him to the station-wagon, and how I wished I could have swatted him like I would have Johnny if he had acted like that…but he taught me the other night (Monday, February 12th) NOT to do that. He threw a fit that night that I’ll NEVER forget. It was the worst I’ve ever seen. He hit at me and pounded on the walls…tore the covers off the bed, and yanked at his curtains. I stood in front of his closed bedroom door (which I had closed for the other kids safety…AND mine)…and would NOT let him out until he calmed down. Maureen said later, “Momma, we didn’t know if you were still alive or not!” I gave Ben four teaspoons of sugar at intervals (suggested by his pediatrician…in case his sugar level had to do with his outbursts)! I still wonder about his blood chemistry. I think we ought to have it looked into! (We did, and it did not show us any abnormalities).
2/1/2016–In reading this over…now that I know what I know–maybe Ben was having a type of seizure. I had never seen him have one until he was about 45 years old. His head jerked then, and strange noises came out of his throat. Maybe that’s why he pulled his coat over his head. Who will EVER know, since he can’t tell you. But, after seeing the seizures, it is certainly a possiblility. He had never had one before this episode, so it never crossed my mind at the time.