After yesterday’s semi-miraculous NE Patriots win through the efforts of a little known, rarely played rookie, what more do we parents of special needs kiddos need to remember except to do our jobs. Then growth and miracles happen.
We’re stuck at home on a snow day yet again here and I’m late to work, and juggling tasks that really take more time and uninterrupted bandwidth than the day will allow. I’ve made my daily action item list of things to accomplish, both for work and with the boys. I’m also mindful of yesterday’s snowshoe where W. flopped every 10 feet on a quite easy trail he’s done at least 10x before. It was one of those obvious “I’m not into it, Mom, and I’m going to show you with my behavior” days. And while he was OK during Super Bowl watching, he did manage to sneak downstairs and do a major food raid while the rest of us were in our bedroom watching post-game interviews. I worried about what this means not only for securing the cookie containers in the freezer right now, but for future life planning in non-home residences. – How can I possibly prevent food steals for the rest of his life?
I’m also mindful of a chat I had with a friend on an hour-long car ride back from a social event about transitioning the boys to the post-age 22 services world and the challenges I have ahead with securing appropriate adult placements. A Boston Globe story yesterday on a wonderful parent-founded transition program for kiddos who likely have greater independent living potential than mine was yet another example, if I want to beat on myself, I can do it real well. I start with how I haven’t been one of those parents who founded an autism non-profit, haven’t discovered a gene that leads to a cure, or in obvious ways made the world a better place for those of us with autistic kids. Perhaps like many of you I’m a self-flagellation expert.
But for today, I’m working to focus only on Doing My Job. Which for me, means continuing on the many “practice self care skills” routines we have going here each day with ADLs, providing enough structure during a snow day that the behaviors don’t completely drive us nuts, and setting a few modest other life-learning goals, such as practicing making their own sandwiches at lunch. We’ll also fit in some other life skills like cleaning up the house a bit and using speech vocabulary in context, such as in “pushing” the snow, presuming it ever stops falling and isn’t measured in feet again.
An unsung football rookie saved a game for a team filled with stars who otherwise grab the glory. Today I’m going to do what that rookie did – practice, train and prepare – so my boys and myself can find a path to doing our jobs, and furthering our team in the big game called habilitation.