|Annual Father's Day photo last Sunday|
Sometimes my son with Asperger's astounds me. Just when I think he is oblivious to the plight of others around him, he will do something so totally lovely as to surprise me completely.
For example, last weekend we had friends over playing on the trampoline. Our neighbour's 9 year old daughter, Maddy, somehow came off the trampoline through the mesh where the door is. She injured her arm. She cried every time she moved it. Fearing a break, I was quick to splint it to a wooden spatula and then put an ice pack onto it.
I sent Duncan over the road to fetch her mum whilst I phoned her up to explain what had happened. Then I watched as Duncan gently put his hand on Maddy's elbow and walk her back home with her mum. A few minutes later he returned and asked me if I could help him retract the stand on her bicycle. Then he wheeled it back across the road for her.
Maybe 5 mins later he asked my husband if he could have two sausage sandwiches to take over so that Maddy and her older brother would have something to eat as they headed off to hospital's Accident and Emergency. It was a 5 hour wait to find that nothing was fractured. We were all relieved.
The next morning, before school, Duncan asked me if he could pop over and see how she was doing.
It melted my heart.
|Bookweek Character Parade - you can see that my boys love the villains|
This week he played violin in his first public performance. It was with the Beginner Strings group during supper at the school's Performing Arts Evening. He was so enthusiastic and it has re-invigorated his interest in the violin. He was going to finish at the end of the year but has now decided to continue tuition so that he can play in next year's Performing Arts Evening.
He has just written his third article for the student newspaper.This one featured the LEGO Tower Bridge that he constructed last holidays from 4000 pieces. He earned the bridge by doing all of his homework for a Social Skills Program that ran for all of Term 2. His article also included facts about the real Tower Bridge in London.
His mainstream Christian school support teacher is such a gem and works with Duncan mostly on construction projects. He gets time out of the stress of the noisy classroom to work with a friend. She informed me that latest project will be the Parthenon to be displayed in the High School History room.
Tristan has been doing so well at school this year but this week the wheels have fallen off the cart and he has been having mini-meltdowns over the smallest of things (dropped pencil, someone taking the handball, being bumped). Usually these things would just emit a 'squark' as his teacher likes to call the noise he makes. But with all the rehearsals (with costumes) at school and at the venue, for the Performing Arts Evening, it has been too much disruption to the routine. He does not do well when there is constant transition.
He's been learning to recite poetry. For the Eistedfod his Stage learned 'Hist! Hark!' and 'Forgiven' (Alexander Beetle). Then the past 2 weeks in class he's had to present a poem for News and so we've learned 'The Zax' and 'Too Many Dave's' by Dr Suess (from the Sneetches and Other Stories).
But the Deputy Principal (whose son also has atypical autism) praised him for his ability to hold it together last week with a playground kerfuffle. I have to say I think, with such a busy term full of rehearsals, Eistedfods, Book Week Parade, Art Night etc., he has done exceptionally well to last 8 weeks! So in conjunction with his teacher, I am giving Tristan a Mental Health Day off tomorrow from school. He will be in LEGO construction heaven. I can only hope that he and little sister will get along.
Fran has a lovely friend at Preschool on Mondays and Tuesdays. They rave about each other. But at Pre-Kindy (attached to the Christian school) on Wednesdays and Thursdays it is a different matter. She has major Pre-Kindy anxiety. Every week there are tears and stories about no one liking her, wanting to be her friend and being mean to her. I can tell you that it is becoming a major issue for us all.
Yesterday I had a word with one of the teachers and today with the Director about the difficulties I had getting her to separate from me at drop off plus the negative comments. There is some concern that she lacks social skills that are necessary for entering into games already established with other students. Where have I heard that before? Now my third child needs social skills help! It probably does not help that she has two older brothers who ignore her most of the time and lack the very same skills. Sheesh!
Anyway it will continue to be an issue until I can do some work on 'friendship' and 'what it means to be a friend' and 'what to do if a 'friend' does not want to play with you'. I think a social story might be in order for her. It never ends but I guess it is time I turned to her needs after years of looking out for the boys' needs.
|Fran dressed up Tristan's bed pal 'Froggy Green-legs'. He was not impressed!|