This week, well this past 2 weeks have been crazy with MO.
The end of term means a lot of change at school, this past week was transition week which means meeting the new teachers and seeing the new classrooms, sports day and school plays, to name a few changes.
MO has had a few instances, one was when it was school fete day, his sweets (school birthday sweet time) fell on the floor and he just burst out into a rage, I’ve never seen him turn so quickly. I held him tight and ran into a classroom and just spoke gently to him and eventually with the help of his LSA we finally got him calm enough to go outside for him to go on the different stalls. You wouldn’t even know he had just had a meltdown.
Wednesday we got a phone call as we were meant to have a picnic at the school and we were going to treat the kids and bring up a cheesestring to go along with their school meal, this is a real treat in our house, however due to rain the picnic and sports day got postponed. MO did not forget our cheesestring conversation, so one phone call later, Dad was up the school with a cheesestring. Apparently MO wouldn’t leave the school office until he had heard them talk to us on the phone, he only left as the office staff said they would come and tell him when Dad had dropped the cheesestring off and his LSA would get it out so he had the cheesestring on his school dinner tray at lunch. This was the first time that made me realise my boy really can’t cope like other children, that a cheesestring caused my boy so much anxiety that it actually caused a lot of adults to run around after him. It just really got into my head.
When MO is stressed he also gets echolalia, this has happened on a few occasions. MOs echolalia isn’t copying what other people say, his is just repeating a sentance over and over. It started in the morning before the school run, saying over and over the same sentance about the tv, if you interrupt the loop he screams the sentence, but it is generally just said in a non tone ,same sound level over and over. He can have completely moved on and be playing but still saying the sentance. We managed to stop this loop after about 20 minutes. He was extremely wound up that day so we decided to walk to school. MO decided this time to shout his sentance, over and over, again if interrupted he would then shriek his sentance over and over. It was awful as I couldn’t stop this loop until he finally ran ahead of us and curled up into a ball on the pathway. I got to him, scooped him up and then walked about 100metres where he then asked to be put down and he was fine for the rest of the school run, running and laughing with his siblings.
Today he has also had moments of echolalia but thankfully we had a wonderful trip out to a friends house and he could swim and just be completely at ease, they have a tortoise and he was in awe of it again, this is one thing I am determined to get, but need to read up more about them and how to care for them before I commit to an animal I have only every wished I had but I know animals do have such a calming affect of MO.
We have taken the YippieYo on the school runs as MO is so all over the place you never know what is going to happen next, he can loose it completely and run into roads not looking for cars or just flatly refuse to move and curl into a ball, so we have decided to do YippieYo anytime we are walking as it is just easier and safer.
My boy is perfect, my boy is lovely and so kind hearted. My boy just can’t handle certain things easily like we can, he can’t process changes like we can. It is heartbreaking not being able to help him, it is frustrating when he just screams a sentance over and over knowing we can do nothing but sit it out, it is tear jerking when you realise he will always be like this, that he will be able to maybe handle it better but it will always be there.
He has a best friend, he is liked in his class and for that I am grateful, as I know I am lucky in this department, we are so fortunate that the children also understand MO isn’t like them, that he can’t cope with certain things and they accept him for him. Who knows what will happen when he gets older but for now I am just so thankful that his class is full of amazing children and adults who love and support him, that call us up over a cheesestring and help me as I struggle to calm him for the school fete. I am thankful he isn’t just a number, and isn’t just ‘another autistic’ child like I hear some of my friends say is the case at their schools, I am grateful the school is trying everything to make his life easier and is going above and beyond, but there is a part of me worrying that this won’t be enough soon, but we will worry about this when and if this time comes.
My boy has autism but this is just a part of him it does not define him.