Dylan Never, Ever Even Picks Up the Ball.
Dylan has had a busy summer. To be fair, it’s not his fault that I revolved my entire summer around his schedule. But I did.
So when he came downstairs asking to go to Hershey Park with a friend, I may have overreacted a bit.
“Mom, can I go to Hershey Park next Friday?”
“Look at the calendar and tell me what you think.”
Dylan looked at the calendar. “It’s my last day of Driver’s Ed. Can I reschedule it?”
“NO, you cannot reschedule Driver’s Ed.”
“But it’s Hershey Park and it’s the only day I can go!”
“I am not rescheduling your last day of Driver’s Ed. In fact, I have revolved my entire summer around your plans, including this class. Your entire family has been doing absolutely nothing so that you can go to Driver’s Ed for 14 days in a row! AND you are going on vacation the next day!”
“But I won’t get to go to Hershey Park!”
“No, you won’t get to go to Hershey Park. You will only get to go to Kennywood for a day and Cedar Point for two days. Awwww, poor thing!”
“I don’t know why you’re getting so mad at me! I just wanted to do this one thing on one day and you’re getting so upset!”
At this point, I may have started to blow a fuse, because I walked away.
Later, I came back with the calendar. I pointed out the four days in June that we’d had together, before Dylan went on the Appalachia Service Project trip. I pointed out the five days after the trip and before camp, when we’d been able to schedule a zipline excursion for the family. Then I showed him the entire month of July, where he was either at camp or scheduled for Driver’s Ed class for three hours a day, for two weeks. Then I showed him the eight day vacation plan.
I remembered that we still have Groupons for a drive-in movie and a tubing trip, which we’ve yet to schedule. I remembered that my nieces are coming into town, that the county fair is yet to come, and that Dylan will be singing at an event in August. I thought about Dylan’s voice lessons and his trips to nursing homes to sing and his volunteer work at the collegiate baseball games.
I didn’t bother mentioning these to Dylan.
I did write a lengthy note to him, complete with email addresses and phone numbers of all appropriate contact people for Dylan’s enormous number of upcoming commitments. Then I told him to keep his own schedule.
Dylan said, “You can’t just dump everything on me all at once like that, Mom.”
“Yes, I can,” I said. “You are 15 and a half. You are plenty old enough to keep your own schedule. If you don’t learn to do it now, you won’t be able to do it for college!”
“But I need you to help me with this stuff,” he said.
The hardest thing about raising Dylan is that I can’t tell the difference between what he needs from me because he has ADHD, and what he thinks he needs because he’s never tried to do it himself.
There’s no doubt that he needs help. There’s no doubt that he has a disability.
And there’s no doubt that when I intentionally “drop the ball,” Dylan never, ever even picks up the ball – let alone runs with it.
“So basically you want a secretary,” I said.
“Basically, yeah,” he said. “Is that a problem?”
Yes, I thought. That is very much a problem.