Sonzee's older siblings always love to put on shows, so when it came time for me to complete their wish lists for Chanuka Angels gifts it was a no brainer to include a karaoke machine and karaoke microphone. The box of the karaoke machine came unwrapped and our middle daughter knew it was for her because it was in her pile, so she has been eagerly anticipating opening the actual box. Our son who really didn't know everything that I requested for him was eyeing a specifically shaped box in anticipation of it being a microphone, thankfully it worked out for the best when he opened his gifts. Sonzee did get a really awesome spinning light wand from her aunt that would be totally awesome to use during their shows, but as usual, despite our best efforts, she was unphased and indifferent to her gifts.
I usually keep Sonzee's gifts limited to things she actually needs, such as clothing, backpacks, pacifiers, or pacifier clips. She doesn't show any reaction towards anything she is given, and honestly, she doesn't seem to even be aware that she on the receiving end of a gift. It is probably more a protective mechanism for myself that I limit the types of gifts she receives because there is no excitement, no reaction, really, there is no awareness at all. From a parent's perspective, it is really sad because the best part of having your child open a gift is their initial reaction. Due to the safeguards I have in place and the fact that we are blessed with four other kiddos, I didn't find it difficult to handle the gift opening portion last night on the first night of Chanukah but then we started family karaoke and I have yet to find the solution to the unplanned emotional situations that inevitably occur.
The karaoke machine was hooked up to the TV, the microphones were connected, the lyrics were on the screen, red, blue, green, and white disco lights were spinning in a darkened room, and the music was blasting. We might as well have been called club Zaila, it was the best. I started to record the kids singing at the top of their lungs and then panned across the room until I got to Sonzee who was just laying in her ppod not participating. A mixture of exhausted from her recent seizure, the multiple other ones she had throughout the day, and just CDKL5 in general. She didn't care for the disco lights going, she wouldn't even look at the awesome spinning wand her aunt gave her. She was just blah. I felt the tears enter into my eyes, but I immediately pushed them away. I didn't feel like letting CDKL5 steal another moment. It was much more fun to focus on my older three dancing while they sang at the top of their lungs, so I flipped my emotional switch to off and pushed the pain away. Always on the tight rope of acceptance and hope of something. While I fully accept who she is as a person, I still hold onto some hope that maybe tonight she will want to look at her amazing spinning light-up princess wand when we turn back into club Zaila.