Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Weekend Review

Unfortunately we didn’t have the best weekend with Meghan while she was home this past weekend. She wouldn’t go out with us very easily. We went to an art exhibit in our town that featured one of Nick’s paintings (more about that on my next post), but then that was all she was willing to do. We wanted to walk around Main St, Plymouth and check out some of the shops, just minus the antique shops with lots and lots of old and expensive glassware—Meghan has motor-spatial issues and she and glassware do NOT get along!! (Um, you may want to use you overactive imagination for just a few minutes now, and then do your quick little laugh, thing!! Don’t worry; I do it all the time!) However, she redirected me back to the car and didn’t want to take that walk …

Then we drove by a favorite casual place for dinner (for barbecue and ribs, oh yum!!) And I could just taste the pinot noir that would be waiting for me and calling out to me… come, come and drink me!! But then we "unanimously" realized that the noise and the seating would not work out for Meghan (sensory issues). In fact, if we happened to be at a restaurant that seemed loud and visually overwhelming for her (like TGIFs), then she would not do well, e.g., bite her hand in frustration, not focus, fidget and need to use the bathroom—a lot, and all of these are the fine makings of one huge temper tantrum—that means a smashed up table and coke on our laps (and one mom (me) sucking down some major wine!!)

So we drove along (very quickly) after imagining the “could be” scene at that one place… And, again, usage of your overactive imagination will work fine here, too!! And, so, we drove down the street to the beach. It was a nice day so we decided to take a walk, climb the rocks (our beaches are super rocky) and listen to the rolling ocean and the seagulls squawk….Ahhh, peeeeeace….

But, not really!! You see Meghan didn’t want to walk on the sand. A new sensory issue? Not sure. But this wasn’t the first time she refused to do what used to be a Meghan-all-time-favorite. Sigh!

So we continued to search for a restaurant that she wouldn’t reject, and after 30 minutes and continuous hand sign rejections (um, sign language that does not involve a finger—thank you very much!!) we drove home—humbled, confused, frustrated and hungry. We ordered in pizza and pasta, and Meghan ate the pasta.

Since Meghan has been living at school, we almost forgot how tough just going out can actually be with her. I’ve become very spoiled!! I've forgotten how everything used to be planned and plotted, questioned and imagined… and not without great tension! Nothing was taken for granted, and usually one of us (me) would have been on “alert status” at all times. Tough going!

Consider my new issue: Meghan loves to go sledding so I thought that we would take her to the mountains where there is tubing—I mean she’s doing so well at school and will kind of tolerate more outings…. So here’s the thing: since the snow has melted where we live, I thought that we could take her to the mountains in western Mass. or N.H and go tubing. But, what I’m worried about is that she might not get on the lift, or worse--panic, or that she simply won’t get out of the car after driving all the way there. And then we’ll have to consider food choices and restaurants that she may or may not eat at…. And if you have an imagination and a keen understanding of sensory issues, then the list goes on and on… Should I just forget it or try it? I really want to do more with Meghan, and have the type of fun that I know we can have as a family. I mean--it’s about time, isn’t it!?

But then again, my imagination always precedes me.

And I can’t even tell you how guilty I’m already feeling about going off to Disney World in a couple of weeks--without Meghan. We have never gone on vacation without her before, but for this trip—and to crowded and overwhelming Disney, we wanted Nick to have a real vacation with his parents and his two cousins who are also coming along. A little time for--just Nick--because he’s been so patient with his sister, and has lost out on a lot!!

Oh, the trials of raising two kids with different issues!! I’m sure most of you can relate!?
Nick and his cousins who will soon be enjoying time together at Disney!!


kristi said...

I can certainly relate! But last weekend, we took TC to a movie and it went pretty well!

Mama Mara said...

One of the nice things about my divorce is that we only take one-on-one vacations, each parent taking one child. It's the only way we'd ever vacation without being overcome by meltdowns.

Disney's on my/Taz's wish list, but it's a couple thousand dollars away. Have a great time!

babs m said...

Disney is such a magic place. I hope you find healing for yourselves.

Anonymous said...

I was at Disneyland today with the kids. I actually imagined what it would feel like to come to the happiest place on earth without my son E-Niner if he were in residential placement. It felt like loss.

He did a good job. Did not enjoy it. Tolerated it for the rest of us. Until we left the park, and then he had a major temper tantrum that involved the paramedics (hyperventilating). So.

I think E-Niner would have rather had a day at home, even though my active imagination wanted other joyous kid-type things for him.

My advice? ENJOY Disney with those going with you!

Tanya @ Teenautism said...

I so remember having to plan things around Nigel's sensory/behavioral issues. It's really hard. He does much better now when he's with family, but school is another matter.

Can't wait to hear about Nick's paintings!