Saturday, April 20, 2013

Current: Drama Queen

Thursday night I accidentally left my cell phone at the church.  It had been a long day, and I was tired.  Yesterday morning a friend and I went for a walk, leaving a little before 7.  Daughter had not yet called, and I didn't think to call her.  She knew I'd forgotten my cell phone, and I knew there would be lots of messages from her on my voice mail when I got home.  When I arrived home a little after 8:00, she had left 3 messages.  I was relieved, because she didn't sound scared, just angry.  Sometimes when she can't reach me she convinces herself I'm can't answer the phone because something terrible has happened. 

I called her immediately, but she didn't answer.  I left her a voice mail explaining what had happened.  When she called back, she was furious.  The bus service that transports her to program didn't have her on their list when they picked up her housemate.  They called the bus service, and they had forgotten to put her name on the list.  They didn't have any buses available to pick her up.  "I can't handle being here all day!  You've said yourself I can't handle it!"  I tried to calm her down.  I told her I was sorry they'd messed up her schedule, and while it would be hard, I knew she could handle being at her house all day.  I reminder her I'd never said she couldn't handle it, I had said it was hard for her to handle unstructured time.  She was trying to reach the home owner to get her to take her to program.  She didn't want to miss program.  It was her fun day.  She went on until I told her I had to get to the church. 

On the way to the church, I stopped for gas.  When I got to the church, Administrative Assistant (who has a daughter with drama queen tendencies) was smiling.  "Daughter called here.  She's not happy.  You are going to have a long day."  About that time, Daughter called again.  She was still ranting and raving about how she couldn't handle being home all day.  I shared her frustration with the bus company, and reminded her of the variety of things she had that she could do at the house.  I refused to go get her and rescue her. 

Another phone call.  The home owner wasn't responding to her calls.  She couldn't stay home.  I'd said she couldn't handle staying home.  She interrupted my ever attempt to speak.  Finally,  I said, "STOP!  Now close your mouth and listen to what I'm saying.  In fact, maybe you should hold your mouth closed so you can listen to what I'm saying."  I heard a subdued, muffled, "Okay."  As she spoke through lips she was holding shut.  I repeated the four things I'd said before, this time numbering them. 
  1. I was sorry they'd messed up her schedule. 
  2. I had never said she couldn't handle being home, I had acknowledged it was challenging for her, and I was confident she could handle it.
  3. I suggested some ways she could keep busy.
  4. I loved her and had confidence in her.
I got a subdued acknowledgement of what I'd said.  Administrative Assistant was still very amused.  A little later Daughter called again.   Home Owner was sending someone to take her to program.  She'd talked to the bus company, and they would bring her home.  Daughter was happy.  The day was saved. 

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