Not the Diffuser!

I don’t know about everyone else, but I love my essential oil diffuser.  I really like the earthy tones…sandalwood, eucalyptus, incense.  I like the way they make my house smell and with four men living in the same space, I need some good smelling stuff occasionally. 

Two days ago, Brandon broke my diffuser.  He was jumping and it fell off the side table I had it sitting on.  This has happened before, so I picked it up, put it back, and cleaned up the mess.  And then I pushed the “on” button and it didn’t work.  So I unplugged it, plugged it back in, and tried again.  Still nothing.  UGH UGH UGH

I have lived with Brandon for the past 15 years.  He has always jumped.  A lot.  When he was little, it didn’t seem to matter as much.  Looking back now, I think maybe we should have addressed this a bit sooner.  But, we did not.  Why was it easier when he was younger?  He wasn’t 5’ 10” and didn’t weigh 145 pounds.  Yep, he is thin….all that jumping around keeps him so, I guess.  I wish that worked for me.

When he jumps now, it’s louder, it’s more intrusive, and it can be more destructive.  His “typical” jumping isn’t as bad as his “angry” jumping.  The typical is calmer and not at all aggressive in nature.   This jumping is more sensory in nature.  Why does he do the typical jumping?

For Brandon, his typical jumping seems to be a way for him to regain control in a stressful situation.  If he is working on a puzzle, we know he needs a break when he gets up and starts jumping.  And there are those times when it is Brandon dancing to whatever song is playing on the iPod.  Sometimes, this jumping is an escape tactic.  He does this at school.  His teachers have told us so many times over the years that if Brandon does not like what they are working on, he escapes by getting up and jumping. 

Brandon’s angry jumping is something very, very different.  The angry jumping is behavioral.  Completely and totally behavioral.  If he does not get something he really, really wants, he will jump with the entire force of his body and land with both feet on the floor at the same time.  He will jump as hard as he can and land on furniture.  And it will shake the entire house.  It is loud, it is aggressive, and it can be very destructive.

What has Brandon’s jumping broken?  Lots of things.  The cedar chest that belonged to my grandma.  The plate glass window in our front room (that was an expensive fix).  More than one entertainment center.  Tiles on the bathroom floor.  Three couches.  The couches are usually broken within the first 2-3 days of it being in our home.   We just know it will happen and we know that hubby is going to have to provide extra bracing.  We are prepared.

Same thing with his bed.  Metal bedframes don’t work.  They bend pretty easy with the jumping.  Several years ago, we were given a solid wooden (particle board, actually, but pretty strong) bedframe for Brandon.  But it is time for a new one.  The whole thing just sags a bit.  Hubby is going to build a new one and maybe Brandon will want to help. 

Do we get angry when Brandon breaks our stuff?  Honestly, there are times we do.    But, we also recognize that Brandon doesn’t mean to break stuff.  He is angry and trying to get it out.  We fully believe that he is not trying to break things.  It’s just an unfortunate byproduct of a tantrum.

We are working with him on recognizing his emotions.  We also encourage him to use his words to tell us he is angry rather than jumping.  I remind Brandon on a regular basis that he can go in the backyard and jump all he wants.  When he is angry, he isn’t interested in what is outside.  It’s a tantrum.  He wants attention and it’s hard to ignore the house shaking and things falling off of tables.

It isn’t happening as often as it was 3 months ago.  But it does happen.  And this last time….it broke my diffuser.  The positive side of this?  I got to go to Target to get a new one.  And I bought a bunch of other stuff, too.   And now, my house smells good again.

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