My approach to mass solo child herding: Dude, just put them all in a cage with a trampoline at the bottom.
(I tried to upload a video with Leelo jumping along with Moomin and Mali and Iz -- before he acted up on Mali and got booted -- but YouTube has been hating me for the past 24 hours.)
You can also send visiting children off to do "tricky pix" with your own spawn:
Seymour has been working insane hours at work, coming home after ten and sometimes closer to midnight most nights this week. I am not angry; I have been in production and understand that this is the way such things go. But I can punish him for somehow finding the time to swipe my camera when I wasn't looking:
Leelo and I have been celebrating his Spring Break by having some dates:
The purpose of these dates (a term coined by Jennyalice, who has had a two-week-long date session with her Jake as of today) is twofold:
1) Spend 1:1 time with Leelo, something our fractured schedule rarely permits, and get lots of snuggle and chat time with the sweet boy I love so much, going to aquariums and clambering over rocks at the shore without pesky sisters. I intentionally did not invite any friends to come with us.
2) Spend 1:1 time with Leelo because when he's at home, he wants me or a therapist guiding him through tasks (or he wants to swim). Otherwise, after five minutes of me not giving him my full attention, he will run into a corner and shit or pee in his pants (no faster way to get mommy's attention). He hasn't had this many accidents in months. After protracted down time at home, he gets so agitated that he starts beating the crap out of me, and giving his sisters the mad glittery eye that means I can't allow him within striking distance of them. FUN.
Yesterday I did have babysitting from 6 to 10 PM, but by the time the sitters arrived the stress of being with my son and not being able to make him happy was probably visible as currents arcing off my head. All I could do was stagger off to a restaurant and glaze out over a book. You know how wearing it is to watch a toddler? Imagine your toddler only getting more intense, less communicative, much stronger, sporadically violent, and becoming an escape artist. I am sorry for complaining so much but today was fifteen hours straight with no break.
In the midst of all of this I am supposed to be working on a real work project (due tomorrow) plus getting people to write stories for CISWY Seattle. If you know any Seattle-area writers who are mopey about the wait list for reading at the Salon of Shame, send them to us; we specifically scheduled our event so as not to conflict with SoS or tread on their toes in any way.
I feel doubly bad moaning because most of my local friends are also going through perpetual crises, the kind that would be heart-wrenching yet fascinating in a movie or novel, but which really suck on a recurring basis. Although it strikes me that our lives would make a great Reality TV Show: AUTISM FAMILIES: AREN'T YOU GLAD THIS ISN'T YOU?
If I was to stand at a wishing well*, I would wish for no more emotional or physical pain, no more smeared poop, and much more sleep and donated babysitting. And moments like Sage's and DivaLea's. For all of us.
*Yes, I watched Enchanted with Iz, and even spent the rest of the day singing like Giselle. Except I sang Poisoning Pigeons in the Park.
P.S. Oh rite, we had an Easter party on Sunday. It were too much fun.
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