My daughter brought home a life-sized, traced self-portrait from camp last week. So awesome!
I dread rainy days. Not only is it grey and rainy outside, our “sexy minivan” doesn’t like the rain either. When it starts to get humid outside, random lights on the access panel start up and disappear. Then, when it’s actually raining, it likes to stall on us. Honestly, I don’t blame it. I would rather stay home and not move either when it’s raining. This morning was one of those mornings. It took us 20 mins to drive the 2 mins to drop my daughter off at French camp.
Usually, the van stalls in the driveway so I was pleasantly surprised when I had no problem getting out of the driveway. Premature thought that “hmmm, last week’s oil change must have fixed the problem”. Silly me.
We made it down the driveway (I should clarify, it’s a *farm* driveway…long) and onto the road without stalling. We skid a little bit on the road but I just thought it was the rain on the road. Made it off of the main road and stall…grrr. Tried to start it about half a dozen times over the next 10mins. Nothing.
Two parents from French camp stopped to see if we were okay – apparently it’s a good thing to be a redhead in a small town because, although there are MANY families in town with the same minivan as us, they knew it was me because of my red hair. Rain came in my window when I spoke with the parents so I took out the paper towel roll (yes, I keep a paper towel roll in my vehicle…I’m weird), and wiped down the inside of the driver’s side door. My daughter jumped into action. “Mommy, can I clean with you?” (she’ll help EVERY ONE else clean EXCEPT for me…go figure). Absolutely! So, we spent the next 5 mins or so getting paper towel wet outside, and wiping down the inside of the mini van, collecting garbage, and I wiped down the inside of the windshield with a cloth I have in the car too.
Happily, after cleaning, the mini van started and we were off to camp. Great way to distract the kids AND we tidied up the inside of the mini van too.
Overnight, my son was up for a few hours, which is “normal” in the wonderful world of Autism. I changed his diaper (6 years and counting!), gave him some water, made sure he was comfortable in his room, closed the door and went back to bed. I drifted in and out of sleep for the next few hours and, when my daughter crawled into bed with me around 6am, my son was wide awake, playing loudly in his room. By the time I got up an hour later, my daughter was fast asleep (which was strange because she’s the morning person in our family) and my son was actually hyper. The first thought that went through my head was “Has he been awake this whole time?!”.
We dropped my daughter off at camp, and then my son and I went to the Early Year’s Centre for the weekly playgroup. Being new to town, it’s nice to get to know other (usually) moms in the area – have even reconnected with a couple childhood friends there too, which is always fun.
My son always goes towards the same toys for the most part: fabric plant pot with 3 fabric flowers and a fabric worm, a bin of plastic animals (which gives him time to practice his new word: “zees-ba”, otherwise known as “zebra”), and some containers filled with rubber insects. He spends most of the time happily lining everything up and using the rubber insects to create letters, spelling out words.
This morning however, he just didn’t want to sit still. As more moms and their kids entered, more kids tried taking these toys away from him. Most mornings, he’s really good at sharing but this morning was not one of those mornings. He kept trying to take the toys back, which made the younger kids cry. I moderated, giving the other child the toy (“First, it’s his/her turn, honey; then, it’s your turn.”). This was unacceptable for him. He started burrowing into me, covering his eyes with his hands, which means he’s self-regulating to try to avoid a meltdown.
I was able to calm him down each time, alleviating a meltdown, and he went back to happily playing with the toys. When he was happy however, he would screech…almost taking the paint off the walls. I tried talking him down, distracting him, giving him a timeout, everything. Nothing stopped the screeching so we ended up leaving, not because anyone asked us to but I didn’t want him to start upsetting the 10 other younger kids that were there, and the snowball of emotions that might ensue.
He was very excited when I told him that we could go to the park, and on the way there, it started looking very ominous so we came back home and within 10 minutes of using sidewalk chalk, it started raining. I had a full demonstration of how obsessive he can be during this time because he would not stop writing (even though it was POURING) until he had finished his normal combination of words.
Poor guy just can’t get a break today. Sun’s out now though so hopefully the park will dry up soon so we can go.