Tuesday, March 29, 2011

T Day

A mid-week aside:

Early on, we established "T Day" - which came to be days on which he volunteered at a local hospital. Although he was interested in and agreeable to this after-school activity (because his ambition is to be a nurse), volunteering also felt a little nerdy to him and it often left him tired at the end of his shift. So we invented "T Day": volunteer days became "T Days"--days when his will dictates our other plans, within reason.

He has since stopped volunteering but the "T Day" tradition survives. Now that he's in twice-weekly therapy and grappling with difficult memories, he has decided that therapy is his official after-school activity (fair enough!) and that therapy days are therefore "T Days". (Often, his logic is irrefutable in this way.)

On "T Day", he gets whatever he wants. Thankfully, his desires are modest. He wants a fast-food snack en route to therapy. He wants his choice of dinner. Sometimes he wants to go to a movie later in the evening, though rarely. He wants to be allowed to stay up an extra half hour.

But most of all, he loves to remind us that it's "T Day". It gives him a sense of power. If I disagree with him on "T Day" he'll get in my face and say playfully "What day is today? Did you forget? Is it not T Day?"

He refers to it that way, using the third person. It's hilarious. For example, today, Tim forgot and balked at buying an after-school fast food snack on the way to therapy. I apologized to T for forgetting to fill Tim in. "I got it covered," he texted me back "I know how to work T Day."

Indeed. A friend once commented, "He missed out on a lot of T Days growing up. Probably every day should be T Day!" I don't think we could stomach that, from a nutritional point of view. But I certainly agree - T Day gratifies an unmet need for indulgence. It also takes the edge off the intensity of therapy.


Corey said...

What a gift! I recently started therapy and after swearing off McDonald's for 6 months, promptly drove myself straight there for a Quarter Pounder. Therapy day should DEFINITELY be a day for a reward.. that is TOUGH.

GB's Mom said...

Great idea. We used special treats, such as stopping for fast food en route. to make therapy a little more positive or maybe just to acknowledge how difficult it is.

Anonymous said...

We used to have these days with Younger Kid. Whenever the school had a late start day. (which was all the time in our district) Younger Kid got to sleep in and have pizza for breakfast. I loved that tradition.

Last Mom said...

LOVE IT! We may have to start taking our daughter to therapy, which she is totally against (and I agree - there are no therapists in are area who get trauma/attachment) in order to see a psych about anxiety meds. I will totally start a L day tradition if she has to go to therapy!

Anonymous said...

Love it! We let our 18 year old FS get fast food on our way to weekly therapy:). Whatever makes it more bearable for the kid makes it worth it!

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