Yesterday Pudding asked me to read her Alexander and the the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day. Pudding likes this book, but it goes in phases for her, and she hasn’t been interested in reading it for several months. I wondered if there was a reason for her choice….
I went to bed with Daddy in my room and then I woke up and Daddy wasn’t there, and I was scared. I went to Mummy and Daddy’s room, and they were asleep, so I had to wake them up to get in their bed. Daddy had to get out. Even though it hadn’t started yet, I could see it was going to be a Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day.
When I woke up it was still dark and there were no birds singing yet, so I had to make noise instead. Mummy is grumpy, so I keep talking and turning until she cheers up. Eventually I hear Daddy get up, so I decide it is time to go downstairs.
Daddy wants me to do my therapeutic listening program, but I don’t want to. I don’t like wearing the head phones, and I don’t want to listen to that music. I pull the cord out of the CD player and Daddy makes me do it again from the beginning. I get my pink yoghurt on my Hello Kitty nightgown and I start to cry. It isn’t even 7 O’Clock, and already it is a Terrible Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day.
I think next time I’ll move to Australia.
Mummy washes my face and the cloth is scratchy. She makes me take off my Hello Kitty nightgown to be washed and I don’t want to. I want to always wear my Hello Kitty nightgown. She makes me wear warm clothes and socks, when I want to wear a dress and no socks- I could do that in Australia.
Cubby has to get dressed too, but Cubby doesn’t have to go to school. Cubby doesn’t even have to go back to school until May. It isn’t fair- I should be able to stay home too. I tell Mummy I’m not going to school today. She take me anyway on this Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day.
The little kids at my preschool scream and cry and it hurts my ears. I tell Mummy I want to go to a different school. Mummy says she’s working on it, but she isn’t working on it today and I don’t want to go today. I have to do OT when I don’t want to, and speech therapy too. I bet I wouldn’t have to do that in Australia.
Mummy picks me up from school and she tells me we have to go to a lab-o-ra-to-ry. I don’t like it there, they hurt me the last time. Mummy says she has magic plasters (Band-Aids) so it won’t hurt my arm this time, and puts them on where my elbow is. I don’t like it. I try to take them off. Mummy and my teacher tell me I can’t take them off, but Mummy draws Hello Kitty on them and I like them better.
When we get to the hospital we have to wait for a long time. The lights are too bright in here, I want to go back outside. I don’t like to wait, my brother doesn’t like to wait, and my Mummy doesn’t like it when me and my brother have to wait.
Mummy has to write on lots of forms. I try to draw with her pen, but she doesn’t like that. Mummy seems angry and I don’t know why and that makes me scared. I knew for sure this would be a Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day.
Mummy says we have to be good in the waiting room to get a lollipop, but when I try to be good by spinning around and making noises, she thinks that isn’t being good. Then I go around the room and touch everything, and Cubby copies me. I don’t know what else to try. I’m confused, and that makes me more scared.
Finally it is my turn to go in, and I get up on the bed and I am brave. Now the nurse takes off my magic plasters, but I don’t want her to because she didn’t ask first, and because they have Hello Kitty on them. I tell her I need a Hello Kitty Band-Aid, but she shakes her head at me. I don’t know what that means.
The nurse tells me it won’t hurt because of the magic, but then I see the needle, cotton wool, and the little dish thing from last time. I remember last time and now I’m very scared. Being this scared hurts me more than needles. Mummy reminds the nurse again about my awe-tism, and the nurse’s eyes move upwards like they’re going back into her head. I don’t know why she did that, but it feels like Mummy is more angry. I can feel when Mummy is angry, even if I don’t know why.
It makes me more scared. Mummy tells me not to be scared, and says I’m being brave and will get a lollipop for sure. Mummy also tells Cubby he can have one, but I don’t know why because he isn’t brave and anyway he’d better not get a pink one. Mummy holds me and talks to me about going swimming. I love going swimming, and soon everything is done and I’m not scared any more. I get a lollipop, and it is pink.
We go back to get my things for swimming and on the way Cubby is talking about how he and Mummy went to one of my places while I was in school. I hit Cubby, but I’m the one who got into trouble. I’ll bet that kind of thing doesn’t happen in Australia.
When I’m getting changed I have to stand on one leg and I fall down. My class for swimming has been changed and now it is all boys instead of girls and boys. I don’t like this and I get mad, but Mummy says I have to calm down if I want to go swimming. I do want to go swimming, but I’m still mad, so during the lesson I keep undoing my costume and telling everyone, and showing my galou-galous. Mummy says after that she is glad Daddy wasn’t there.
Mummy says it is cold outside, and even though she cut off all my hair when she didn’t like the way I cut it, she makes me use the hair-dryer. I don’t like hair-dryers, not on any day.
We go home and have dinner, and I get ready for bed, and it is almost the end of my Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day.
If I think about it though, they probably have hair-dryers in Australia, because I’ve lived on three continents and things don’t change as much as you’d think. I ask if we can read the Alexander book. Mummy is looking at me strange, and she asks me what was my day like. I’m not sure what to say to answer her, so I tell the truth:
“Today is Monday, Mummy.”
Mummy smiles and tells me that it is. And gives me a cuddle, but I can’t go to sleep unless she stays in the room with me. I hope she is there when I wake up again…..