So, I was going to write about how I hate the term, “quiet hands,” but instead I’m going to write about David Bowie. Oh, I will get to the quiet hands thing in a bit, but first… Bowie. As a child, there were some, “unflappable,” truths. (Unflappable will be funny later, trust me.) Anyway, some of these truths…
Finger in ear = ok.
Finger in nose= No one will sit with you on the bus.
Pink is for girls, because enough people say it is. Pink is my favorite color, due to this truth.
Boys like cheerleaders, and you like boys. You are going to need pom poms.
Baseball players can adjust their junk on national TV, but if I get a wedgie, I have to walk around with it all day. It isn’t fair, but that’s the way it is.
I could go on, but you get the idea. At some point in your own childhood, some of your truths get shattered. Here is one example from yours truly:
I was visiting a friend from down the street. I look outside and it is dark. As every child of the 80’s knows, dark means it is time to go home. I walked down the hall and heard some haunting music coming from my friend’s older brother’s room.
“You’re face to face with the man who sold the world…”
Out steps the brother into the hallway. Pale as a China doll, flawless liquid liner, every strand of jet black hair chased with Aqua Net. And just like that, Karate Kid was out, David Bowie was in and I welcomed puberty. In that very moment, I handed pink over to Crockett from Miami Vice and it evaporated in the heat.
In all honesty, this brother was not all that attractive. He was too thin and in desperate need of an orthodontist. So, really, he had Bowie nailed. Artists like Bowie allowed some of us to unzip our awkward bodies, sprinkle them with stardust, and put them back on proudly.
What does all of this have to do with quiet hands? Well, for anyone who doesn’t know, some spectrum kiddos flap as a stim. Occasionally you will come across a therapist who will discourage this kiddo from flapping and try to replace the behavior with something more socially acceptable, like squeezing their hands together. Apparently, Squeezing= ok. Flapping= no one will sit with you on the bus. Enough people decided this to make it so. To anyone encouraging quiet hands, I suggest a quiet mouth.
Today I can simply go to my Facebook feed and see all of the tributes to someone who started out as a boy in a dress and holding a microphone, so that means that the rules can be changed all over again to fit even more kids at the cool table.
Not everyone is going to fit in a box. Sometimes when you tell a boy to wear a suit on stage, you should watch out, because it just might be a space suit. And sometimes, flapping has a purpose. Maybe my boy is just spreading stardust. There is no stopping stardust.
“The stars look very different today.”– David Bowie 1947-2016