This week was the first one back to school. Within social media there appears to be two camps; the ‘yay the kids have gone!’ (parents whos children have gone back to school) camp and the ‘yay the kids have gone!’ from the home education community. Everyone seems glad the kids have gone back. I’m not. I miss ’em. They are both very excited about their new classes/school so I’m thankful for that. But I still miss them!
True, everywhere is busier in the summer holiday. With autism being taken into consideration, it can be harder to get out during the school holidays. But with Josh and Grace at home we have to make that effort, and its paid off.
They’ve all had a lovely, lazy, bonding 6 weeks; the way holidays should be. But now I’m sad to see the little ones go back to school.
Dylan has changed a lot in the holidays. Apart from growing a good couple of inches he now feels more like a teenager. Upstairs frequently smells of spray deodorant and he has started applying wax to his hair. The intensity of having his siblings at home all the time has also encouraged Dylan’s voice way more than his Dad or I could. He will speak up. The social tricks of looking at someone and working to get their attention is emerging. He will be more forthcoming in saying ‘no’ or ‘finished’ in response to demands placed on him, A life skill I am so thankful for. He’s learned to ride a bike. He had generalised and expanded his shopping skills. His ability to wait for things and his acceptance when answered ‘no’ to a request has quadrupled.
He has done so well.
But a new school year brings new challenges. This year Dylan will be working on his laundry skills to gain independence with this. He will further develop his use of money and gain the skill to reconise if he does or doesn’t have enough money to purchase something -a skill I still struggle with! He’ll be learning to use a microwave and we’re planning to develop his abilty to recognise items that are too hot and to handle them appropriately instead of the repeated touching that he does which leaves him so vulnerable to being burnt.
And – the most daunting plan- we’re going to find him a buddy. Like a peer or mentor. Just someone his own age that he can hang out in McDonald’s with. We’re not totally sure how we’re going to find them but that’s our mission. And with a whole year to work on it, exciting times are ahead!