Accepting their uniqueness

When my eldest son, Marcus, started schooling, I did not ask for him to be an honor student because I just wanted him to enjoy the whole learning experience. I know he belongs to the above average group (even superior), based on his teachers’ assessment, test results and my own observation, but again I don’t want to put pressure on him. But then I realized that even if you don’t expect your kids to excel, its quite frustrating to see them ‘as if’ waste their talent and refuse to take advantage of it. Marcus gets high grades only on subjects he likes and very low on those he thinks ‘unimportant.’ Worse, he has no motivation at all to study.

Zach, on the other hand, is a born achiever. Like Marcus, I never pushed him to be the cream of the crop but he chose to be one. Best about it, he seems not to exert effort at all. Being an honor student for him is ‘as if’ a normal thing. He nags me to do homework and he loves to read. Funny because at times he won’t believe what I ask him to do unless he reads it from the diary himself.

Modesty aside, I have intelligent kids. Even Lia, I can see potential in her. She’s interested with numbers and letters already. She can pick up words and ideas easily. It’s my kids’ attitude, interests and motivation that differ. Sometimes I think maybe not being there all the time for Marcus during his growing up years (because I was still working then) could have been a factor, but I cannot really blame myself because we needed additional source of income at that time. Well, at least I gave up work before its too late. My only dream for my kids is that they become the best that they can be and I’ll do my best to ensure that.

Embracing my OCness

I have an Obsessive-compulsive disorder. No specialist confirmed it but I think that my control-freak attitude is enough evidence already. I am not much of the ‘house should always be in order’ type of OC. With 3 children around, I am just thankful I’m not. But when I work or study, I want things around me arranged and fixed accordingly before I could start anything. Problem is, I tend to control things and even the life of my loved ones. As much as I would want to protect them, I realized that they need to go through the process and not block them from experiencing life.

They say that people with OCD feel strong urges to do certain things repeatedly — called rituals or compulsions — in order to stop the scary thoughts or to try to ward off the bad thing they dread, or to make extra sure that things are safe or clean or right.

Based on the site www.helpguide.org, most people with obsessive-compulsive disorder fall into one of the following categories:

1. Washers are afraid of contamination. They usually have cleaning or hand-washing compulsions.
2. Checkers repeatedly check things (oven turned off, door locked, etc.) that they associate with harm or danger.
3. Doubters and sinners are afraid that if everything isn’t perfect or done just right something terrible will happen or they will be punished.
4. Counters and arrangers are obsessed with order and symmetry. They may have superstitions about certain numbers, colors, or arrangements.
5. Hoarders fear that something bad will happen if they throw anything away. They compulsively hoard things that they don’t need or use.

I am a washer because I want to wash my hands most of the time because clean hands give me a sense of satisfaction. I am also a doubter because I feel that when I’m not on top of things, something bad might happen and I have myself to blame. I also have the tendency to be a hoarder because it’s so hard for me to give up some things I should be throwing already. But above all, I think I strongly fall into number 2, the checker, for the following reasons:

1. I excessively double-checks things such as locks, appliances, and switches. Also, important documents and possessions. Yeah, weird, but true!
2. Repeatedly checks on loved ones to make sure they’re safe. For this I thank the person who invented cellular phones and internet.
3. Wants to be on top of things to be sure that loved ones and belongings are protected.
4. Needs re-assurance

I need to know all these because embracing my OCness makes me feel normal despite my abnormal actions and feelings.