This weekend our family saw some little victories. They were the “little things” that we all talk about…nothing super huge in the scope of life, but thanks to the life we lead, well, little things are definitely worth celebrating.
On Friday, Tate had his 7-year-old (!!) well-check visit. Our doctor is a great pediatrician, but he is the first to admit he is not an autism expert. He asked a few questions about Tate, and when I told him that Tate could answer them, he turned to Tate and asked Tate..and Tate answered. It was a bit of a mumble, but the doctor and I took it. It’s never too early to start self-advocating!!
That evening, Tate had a birthday party to attend. It was his friend Geo. The last time we had gone to Geo’s birthday party was 2 years ago–right after the official autism diagnosis. We left the party right before the cake, as just the thought of singing “Happy Birthday” was freaking Tate out–big time. This year?! Tate managed to maintain his sanity and stay regulated during a 2-hour party at Chuck-E-Cheese. He climbed, played a few games, danced to the animatronic Chuck-E, and shock of shocks, he high-fived the “real” Chuck-E when he came to our table. (Insert jawdrop)
Tate sang and danced while we sang “Happy Birthday” to Geo. He had a blast. He ate, he played, and at the end of the party, he said thank you to Geo’s mom. It was perfect. The victory was not lost on Geo’s mom, who asked him for a high-five..and asked if he would like a play date soon. Tate said yes!
On Saturday we had soccer. Tate was a bit resistant at first, but the second his buddy showed up, Tate was out on the soccer field, kicking the ball around like a champ. He just was…happy.
Later in the day we had a bar-b-que with our neighbors. We have six kids between us, ages 9.5 to 3. It was chaotic and loud..but fun. Tate held his own, pumping on a swing on the play set, jumping on the trampoline, and asking for a turn in a play house. It was going so well. He didn’t even lose his shtuff when the neighbor’s son tried to antagonize him. He just moved along…and found something else to do. Yes, he was slightly removed from the group, but he did what he needed to do to stay in control. He also let me know that he was tired and wanted to go to bed, so we let him fall asleep on the neighbor’s couch while the other kids watched a movie.
On Sunday we played in the yard for a bit, and then we made our way to Jake’s first lacrosse game of the season. Jake doesn’t mind practices, but games really give him some anxiety. We were happy to see that he did so well getting his uniform on, and put on his gear mostly by himself. Last year he couldn’t manage that.
Once he was with teammates on the field, he got a ball and started to practice with one of his teammates. He also kept up much more on the field, and while he avoided any of the major action, he was more “with it”. He did a great job, and we were proud of him.
While Jake was playing his game, I had the younger two boys on the playground. Cole was like the mayor. He told everyone his name, played with a few different groups, and pretty much walked (and ran!) around like he owned the place. I wasn’t so worried about him..but I did have to kiss his head when he bumped it on the slide.
Tate did amazingly well. He shared the swings with other children..and navigated a few social interactions pretty well. When he was getting anxious about the swing and whether he would ever get it back, he came and asked me to play with my phone. He was able to regulate by watching a video of spinning ceiling fans and a 3-minute segment of a Doc McStuffins episode. He stayed regulated and played quite well.
Last night Tate’s allergies were flaring. It was obvious his head hurt, and his nose kept running incessantly. Around midnight I awoke to the boys’ bathroom light on, and the toilet lid slamming up. I went to check on the culprit and found Tate crouched there. He looked up at me and croaked, “My tummy is sick.” He managed to get his mess in the actual toilet. Upon examination of his bed, he had gotten sick there, too, when he coughed from his allergies…and I stripped it and threw it all in the tub to be dealt with in the morning.
He went and laid down on the floor next to my and Hubz’s bed. I laid next to him. He did a soliloquy of “One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish”…twice. But after an hour, he asked to go lay on the floor of his bedroom…and he fell asleep until 6 am. This was nothing major, but it was.
So, this weekend was nothing major…and some kind of wonderful as we got to bask in the progress that our kids are making each and every day. It felt good.