The boy and how far he has come

Yesterday the boy got a Principal’s Award from school. I know all the children end up with them over the course of their school life but it marked for his dad and I how far he has come. He received it because he had settled into Year 2 very well and was working hard and doing his best in class. He struggles a bit at schooling, so this was a big achievement for him.

He has had a few problems, he is still trying to overcome some but he is getting there.

We can now take his photograph. There was a time that he would immediately hide if someone took out a camera. There is a gap in the photo albums between the ages of 2 and 7. All we had of him was the back of his head, or just a blur as he tried to run from the photographer.

He nows makes up plays with his sister and performs them at family get togethers. This would never happened 12 months ago – but he is quite happy to get up at gatherings and make up impromptu plays. Although as there is never any direction these plays tend to go on a bit and we adults zone out after a while…..

He is in more control of his temper. He has been an angry little boy for quite some time and his dad and I have had to do a lot of work for him to learn to control it. There has been many times when I have gone through the checklist on his anger sheet and asked him to count to ten, only for him to shout at me ‘NO, YOU COUNT TO TEN YOU STUPID IDIOT’!! Hmm… not the result we were after at the time. He has grown into his body and is not a mass of anger anymore. We are not waiting to get punched when telling him off anymore. It was a bit scary but (fingers crossed) we are past it.

He plays the violin and is really good at it. He picked it up straightaway and the teacher can’t believe how good he is. Unfortunately he won’t practise infront of anyone – so if you want to hear him play you will have to stand on the other side of his closed bedroom door. I have to lie and tell him that the sound doesn’t travel. So so far, nobody else knows how good he is.

He is still shy and unsure of new situations. He was a ball of nerves for the first few weeks of school this year. He still refuses to get up and play at the music concert, and insists that he will not be going onstage at the school concert in a few months. We will get him on there, we just need to do a lot of work beforehand.

I still get lots of cuddles from him. He is a very affectionate and caring little boy. He told us after school yesterday that he recieved a sticker from a teacher because he asked another little boy who was crying to come and play with him and made him happy again.

He still hides behind me when he is out of his comfort zone, but I can see the work we have been doing with him paying off.

 

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Lessons I’ve learnt

I have learnt some very valuable lessons during our time dealing with aspergers. I thought I would share these with you, so you can make an informed decision about whether you would like an aspergers child as well.

You won’t be able to ask your child to do anything without them falling on the ground/bed/whatever flattish surface is nearby. This goes for asking them to brush their teeth, hair, put on clothes, have a bath, do their homework, empty the dishwasher and pick up their toys.

Don’t expect to get anywhere in a hurry. As soon as you say you are ready to go, then the child will say that they need to go to the toilet. And stay there for a while singing. Then they will have to change their underwear because now it feels funny. And can’t put on their shoes because the socks are not right and they won’t be able to do up their shoes because they can’t get them on tight enough and they will fall off….. (get the picture)

Homework will be beneath them. Don’t ask them to memorise spelling words because they have already learnt them when they wrote them down in their homework book that day. Don’t bother trying to get them to look at them ‘just in case’ because that will result in major tantrum. Wish I knew what it was like to have a photographic memory…. This also goes for learning music and lines for a play. They can remember everyone’s lines which comes in handy if someone is not there for the production.

Never suggest they eat something. Food is not liked. If there is any food in your cupboards then just throw it out now.

Maybe just keep the vegemite.

Sleep is also not liked. The child will endeavour to keep you in their bedroom late at night and then keep calling out overnight to help put them back to sleep. They also won’t care that you are tired and grumpy in the morning, because they are not. You will miss out on all of your tv shows as you go through the whole nighttime routine. Every. Single. Night.

You will get told information about subjects that you knew nothing about. And would not care to know about. Like the series order of a particular tv programs, who is in the tv series, what else they have been in, what lightsaber each character has in starwars etc. Seriously, why do they think we care!!

Hygiene is beneath them. You will save on water. And toothpaste. And shampoo.

Never expect any sympathy. They don’t care. If it is not about them then they have no interest at all. So you might as well just shut up and get on with it.

Don’t go anywhere with sun, sand, bees, flowers, strong smells, or loud noises. Or cold.  As there is nowhere else to go you might as well stay home.

There are many many other delightful tips I could share with you, this is only a taste. But it might help you make your decision easier.

Remember! Keep the vegemite!