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Happy Valentines Day…. with a twist

February 14, 2013

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Awww.. holidays.  So interesting to try to navigate with an autistic child.  My son will fixate on holidays for months.  He’s still asking about Halloween, and Christmas.  He wants to know when holidays are over and when the next one starts.  He doesn’t like to see decorations of past holidays still out.  It bothers him.  Really bothers him.  He doesn’t like to see Christmas cartoons or movies when it’s not Christmas.  And Halloween, he both loves it and hates it.  So we have to tell him what holiday is coming up next to get over the last one.  After the Christmas season was over, we had to start talking about Valentine’s day to ease his mind.  And now.. Valentine’s day is here. Driving him to school, I told him he was going to have a great Valentine’s party.  He said NO.  He didn’t want a party.  Sigh….. it’s always a roller-coaster.  It’s just too intense for him.  When I was a teacher, I remember the wildness that would happen in our classroom on these kinds of days.  And I was an adult!  So I can only imagine what it’s like for my son and his hyper sensitive hearing, and being off schedule a bit, and having so much to look at.  If I stop and think… I guess it would drive me nuts too!

Star War's Valentines

I really tried to incorporate his favorite things into his Valentine’s party.  I found special Star War’s cards for him to pass out and had him help me fill some goody bags to hand along with them.  Getting him to sign his cards was a task.  Some may say I should have just moved on, but I wanted him to finish what we started.  After some (fake) tears he did finish, and seemed happy with himself and with his Valentine’s for his classmates.  He was excited to give his teachers gifts too.  Until this morning…. and he asked me if Valentine’s was over and what the next holiday was coming.  All I could do was smile and tell him, Next up St. Patrick’s Day!!!

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So we have had to change the way we “do” holidays, and how we prepare, and  how we celebrate.   We have to watch him for cues.  In other words we have to be mind readers to see if he’s overwhelmed. We can’t stay as long at family functions as others can.   We are on Autism’s schedule for now.  We have to make sure we ourselves are not overly stressed since he really senses it.  And above it all, we have to keep our sense of humor.  If we don’t laugh, we would lose our minds.

happy-all-holidays

So Happy Valentine’sChristmasEasterHalloweenFourthofJulySt.PatricksThanksgiving!!!!!   And any other holidays I might have missed.  I’m sure my son will let me know  😉

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One Comment
  1. Charlene McHugh permalink

    Always so sensitive and clear…you are a wonderful mother; Kevin is a lucky boy!

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