Welcome back. If you are joining me for the first time, welcome, and thank you for taking the time to read today’s blog. I have been sharing about a change that happened in my life in April 2020. Jaxon is his name, and he is 2 1/2 now. Some of you know the story of how Jaxon came to live with me. If you don’t know, please go back and read Starting Over At 54 – Parenting 2.0. Today is all about cars, fast cars.
Jaxon is full of energy and loves cars, small cars, especially Hot Wheels, and Matchbox. One of his favorite things to do is roll his cars on flat surfaces at eye level or higher. It can be any flat surface. Bookcases, tabletops, countertops, tv stands, and other flat furniture. It doesn’t matter. However, the stovetop is an automatic no. No stovetop turns into an automatic temper tantrum with unintelligible words and fits on the floor.
Most of the time, his flat surface of choice is my bookshelves. I have two tall bookcases full of books from college and years of teaching Women’s Bible studies. Jaxon likes to roll his little cars along the edges of the shelves. There are a few inches available. It reminds me of driving my car through the mountains as I hug those curves for fear I may drive over the edge.
Jaxon is not one to sit on the floor and roll his cars on the tile floor. With a large expanse of tile to roll cars, he is not interested. He doesn’t like to play with toys on the floor. Honestly, I’m not heartbroken over that, as it takes a lot for me to get down on the tile floor and spend any time sitting there. The old bones aren’t what they used to be.
At first, I never gave this any thought. If he doesn’t like crawling around on the floor, and it’s easier to play on high surfaces, sounds fine to me.
But I wonder if that is part of who he is.
I remember as a child spending many hours playing on the floor with all my toys. We set up houses, dolls and played board games on the floor. There was more room to spread out. The carpet was comfortable enough. We spent hours playing on the floor, laying around, and spreading out with our friends. Jaxon spends 1% of his playtime playing on the floor.
Play for him is at eye level or above.
Months ago, I built him a table to roll his cars and play with other toys. He never plays on that table. Apparently, it’s not high enough.
When it comes to pushing toys around, his babysitter has play grocery carts at her house. I have seen Jaxon pick them up and put them on her ottoman, and roll them back and forth. Eventually, he puts them back on the floor and rolls them around a bit, and then goes back to playing with cars.
Big cars, little cars, it does matter the size. If he can find a flat surface that is eye level or higher, he is content.
The glass stovetop is still a problem, especially after cooking, and the burners are still hot. I have to block the area to keep him away. He doesn’t grasp the concept of hot, and he doesn’t like the word no. As a parent, you do everything you can to protect your child. If you see danger, you redirect and guide them to safety. With Jaxon, redirecting and guiding him to safety causes temper tantrums because he doesn’t understand. He cannot communicate his frustrations with words, so he acts out. It’s hard to watch and hard to handle.
What I have learned.
Over the years, the Lord redirected me several times away from danger. Admittedly, I threw my own tantrums because I didn’t understand what he was doing at the time. But looking back, I am thankful he redirected me. The Lord loves me so much. He protected me from harm and from hurting myself. That’s what our loving Father does.
Have you ever stopped to think about how many times the Lord has protected you? How many times has the Lord redirected your steps so that you avoided being hurt or causing someone else pain?
Each week that goes by, I am learning more about this little redhead boy. I am learning what works and what doesn’t work. I am also learning more about myself and seeing him through the eyes of Jesus. Jaxon definitely has struggles I have no experience in handling. Some people have suggested I give him back or send him to foster care. I can’t do that and neither of those are good options. He was brought here for a reason, and I need to do everything I can to help him.
Besides, I struggle with things I cannot handle by myself. Don’t you?
This one thing I know – if it weren’t for the Lord, my life would be more chaotic and out of control. I thank the Lord for bringing me this far, and I am certainly relying on him each day where Jaxon is concerned. This is so hard, and I feel so unprepared. However, I take solace in knowing I am not alone. The Lord is with me and will see me through cars, tantrums, and all.
The Teaching Lady