But then I am reminded. I have a Highly Sensitive Child.
I have gotten lots of reminders the last few days. Maybe it's because with Halloween coming, he's on high alert. If you've been reading for a while you know I am not a big fan of Halloween. I don't have a philosophical objection to it; it just annoys me. Evan, however, detests it. Not only does he detest it, but he is terrified by it. This is highly poetic since he was born on October 29 and came home from the hospital on October 31, resulting in my putting a sign on the front door that we had a new baby and would not be handing out candy that year.
Anyway, a few weeks ago he informed me that he would not be going to the store with me anymore until Halloween is over. A few days ago, though, we made a quick stop at Jewel and all went in. As soon as we entered he remembered the season and held back, but I told him that we would avoid the offending aisles. Of course, the Halloween trappings are ubiquitous this time of year, and as we rounded a corner suddenly there was a life-size zombie suspended in the air above us. Great. Panic ensued and it was all we could do to get out of the store without tears. I am proud of him, though. He didn't melt down but kept his composure even though I, as his mom, well knew his internal distress.
The reminders don't end there. Yesterday for history we read about Nicholas Copernicus. When Evan learned that Copernicus died shortly after the first copy of On the Revolutions of the Heavenly Spheres was placed in his hands, he started to cry. Last night as we watched The Wonder Years he ran from the room during a scene in which Kevin, the main character, has a nightmare involving a portly friend of his disappearing into a sinkhole of candy. He was seriously upset and it took a lot of convincing to get him to finish the episode with us. Last night he had one of his periodic crying spells about the death of our dog, Shiloh, last year. And yesterday I was also reminded, as Evan's teacher, of the difficulty he has blocking out other stimuli so that we can do something academic in nature. Sometimes it seems I have to ask, "Are you listening, Evan?" every other sentence. And then there's the other end of the emotional spectrum. This kid never merely giggles. Every slightly humorous thing is ROFLOL funny.
I'm not sure why the HSC signs have been coming so fast and furious of late. Yes, there has been a lot going in our life, but that is nothing new. This family has been on an emotional tightrope for years now. Maybe it's because Dad just left again. Whatever the reason, I don't see it as a problem. I love my HSC. I love that he weeps for 500-year-old scientists and that he can't abide a plastic knive dripping with fake blood. Some might think he needs to be told to grow up and be a man and stop feeling everything so deeply. I say call me in ten years and I'll show you a man whose heart hasn't been hardened by being told it isn't supposed to feel.