Carlos Esteban Joaquin Hamann (Charles Steven Joaquin Hamann) is a boy filled with so much life and filled with extreme emotions! He has been this way since he was born on Father’s Day Weekend in 2005! He did not want to come out into the world. He kept going back into the birth cannal but finally out came this beautiful, witty, passionate, aggressive, brilliant, hyper, impulsive bundle of joy. No one knew the direction of his life. I had no clue what it would be like to be his mother and his advocate.
I knew that he was special early in his pre-toddler years. It all started with cars being lined up in a straight row. He had patterns that he would do with his cars and don’t dare step on them, move them out of place or there would be price to pay. Usually at that age it was just a lot of screaming and such.
The older he became the clearer it was to see that his mental illness was very prominent. I have been around mental illness all my life so it did not surprise me to know that my boy was who he is. We have come along way from 3 years old up to 14 years old. The battle is real. There are many ups and downs. The roller coaster ride is tiring. I am learning a lot about self care and support but as much of a control freak that I am, its hard for me to let things go. So this coming year I need to really practice more self care. Its just hard because I trust no one with my son. He is so unique in so many ways. I am blogging this blurp because of the word normal. He has told me, “Mom I want to be normal.” I look at him and then say this, “Carlos, there is no normal. Normal is being the person you are meant to be. Normal is not being who you think others want you to be.”
He is 14 and although he is a teenager and on his way to manhood, he still plays with cars, trains, planes, and so many other fun toys. I am not a believer of “age” appropriate toys. I feel that toys inspire imagination. When we “grow up” its a sign of paying bills, and so many other responsibilities. So I just accept his passion of transportation. His favorites are police and fire. Either way my son’s normal isn’t there yet. I feel like he is fighting himself daily. He has met some new boys his age and they really seem to accept him for him. We have real battles on a daily basis. I am exhausted on many days. Then there are those days of great quality time. Other times there are days where I can actually breathe and think, “Wow! This day really went that smoothly?!”
Every day is unique. Living with mental illness keeps me and my little family on our toes. A day in the life of my son is a day in the life of my daughter and I. We take it a day at a time. Our hopes for Carlos is that he can have more emotionally controlled days. We hope for the days of tranquility. For now we take the minutes that we can get.