The sleeping arrangements have only gotten stranger. The laundry basket is back in its proper place: beside the dryer in the basement. And for a few weeks, Martin slept in his bed like a normal human being in the Western hemisphere. But now, in a moment inspired by Gandhi or some other spiritual purveyor of physical discomfort, Martin is sleeping on the floor.
This floor routine has been going on for a little while. Tonight, it got even weirder. Martin rolled up a little blanket, shoved it into an empty Tinker Toy container, and laid down on the floor. Then he pulled the blanket out, looked up at me, and said, “I want to sleep in this can.” The Tinker Toy can is about 14 inches high and 6 inches in diameter. Even Gandhi wouldn’t fit in that can. So Martin decided he would sleep with his feet tucked into the can. I can only hope there’s no need to escape the house in the dead of night because the poor child would have to hop out rather than run.
I think I’ve finally given up trying to push Martin to do certain things. I don’t make him eat more than plain bread and applesauce at church dinners, even though it’s a place where a robust appetite is considered a theological virtue. I don’t make him dress in ways that are weather-appropriate and somehow he has avoided both heatstroke and frostbite. Giving up normality has not yet brought me peace of mind, but it has made both me and Martin a little happier.