Thursday morning, we weren't convinced that Charlie was going to make it to school and that he had indeed had a relapse on Wednesday. He had stayed in his bed and slept since 7pm on Wednesday night, with intermittent coughing but not, I thought, as much as he had the previous nights. When I went to wake him just before 8am on Thursday morning, I heard a very adamant 'bye Mom' and 'no school' from a voice under the blue fleece blanket. I went out of Charlie's room and started to make coffee (which I haven't been drinking for a few days.....big sign that something is amiss with me; I've been tag-teaming Charlie being sick and am, by my estimates, one day behind him).
In the meantime, Charlie got up on his own, got dressed, and got into the car, and off he and Jim went.
Charlie had insisted on wearing his green shirt to school. He had not worn it yesterday but, as he didn't seem to be feeling quite as well on Thursday, we figured 'how important is it.' I had had time to slip another t-shirt into his bookbag and shortly after 10am I got a cheery email from his teacher. She wrote that he had been sitting at his desk and an aide had said 'let's change your shirt, Charlie' and he got up and did so. At lunchtime, he wanted to change back into the green shirt, but there was no fuss or ruckus.
These quite smoothly executed transitions are a reminder to me that, very often, Charlie is not being 'non-compliant' when he does not immediately accede to a request. He might well just be thinking things through, letting his mind work through whatever patterns and pathways it follows. Then, he's ready.
Now, if we had been aware of this how many years ago, how many unpleasant scenes might have been avoided?
By the end of the day, the extent to which Charlie felt better was revealed when he called me up the stairs for 'help': He had pulled his (queen-size) mattress off the box springs onto its side and wanted to shove it out the door of his room, and back into another room that was once his bedroom. Previously, when Charlie started moving furniture, nothing could dissuade him not to---and then, once the moving was almost complete, he would ask to have the furniture put back, and was a less than happy camper when we were not able to do so on the spot.
I told Charlie I was not up to furnitre-rearranging and called Jim (who also had not been home at the last incident/occasion of mattresses off the boxspring). Jim went up the stairs and simply directed Charlie to put the mattress back where it should be (with Jim getting the process started). Dad and son put things (pillows and blanket too) back in order and Charlie settled down with his iPad.
Unfortunately Jim has started to sense a few symptoms of The Illness That Did Us In. We're going to try to project the healthiest of verbs out to him. But what kind of tight team o' three would be if we didn't all get sick---and better---together?