Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Inching into the holiday...

It's amazing how easy it is to become disconnected from the usual flow of life when holiday time comes around. For some rreason I'm really aware of it this year, & it's helped me to empathise a lot with B's difficulties when the normal flow of life is interrupted...

C's parents arrived yesterday afternoon from Pittsburgh. They flew up & rented a car, then got themselves settled in their hotel (where they've stayed while visiting for 10 years now) while I picked B up from school & took him for a regular visit with his psychologist. He was happy to hear that the daily schedule they've worked-out for B at school (with incentives for staying in his classroom for lessons) is working very well. I was also able to check-out the latest, rather disconcerting, development... B started making a new tic vocalisation over the weekend, & when I asked him, as usual, what was triggering it, he said "nothing, mom- it's just happening". This is the first time B has had Tourettes tics that have not been triggered by OCD anxiety. Up till now we've been able to modify the tic frequency by modifying his environment to minimise triggers. B's psychologist told us that non-triggered tics are simply not modify-able. They are neurological firings that have nothing to do with volition, so there's no way to behaviourally deal with them. This was good to know, although I'll admit my heart sank a bit, too. It feels as though B has moved into a new phase of things & I'm not quite up to speed. One thing that occurs to me, though, is that this may be fallout from B's zoloft dosage being lowered by half over the past month or so. In either case, I made sure that B had heard what Dr. M had said about this new tic, & assured him that we'll just do our best to live with them. B doesn't seem worried much about them, which is good, & I've let folks at school know that these must be ignored as much as possible.

B had a nice visit with Dr. M & was in a good mood afterward, looking forward to seeing his grandparents at dinner time. C was working a bit late, so we'd arranged to meet them at their hotel & eat at the restaurant there. Neither C or I had thought much about the meat thing (unfortunately)... We met them in the lounge & then as we moved into the restaurant, B immediately put Rufus over his nose because of the smells (of food). He sat like this at the table until his Shirley Temple arrived, which he drank with his fingers pinching his nose (for the first bit). The drink perked him up, & the waiter was very attentive, bringing B another as soon as he was finished with the first. After that, B had to go to the bathroom, & so dad took him, & our meals arrived while they were gone. What B had thought was pizza was really flat bread with tomatoes & cheese melted over it, which he rejected, so I ordered him a salad, but the worst part was the meat on his dad's & grandparents' plates... he covered his face & moaned quietly, wriggling in his chair. His grandmother vaccillated between asking him if he'd like to move between she & C (away from me) & asking loudly how the other meat dishes were. B just sat & writhed & moaned. I ate quickly, trying to figure out what to do, & decided that I'd take him back to the lounge where there were comfy sofas & candles, & where there were no smells to bother him, & where I could finish my glass of wine :) He agreed immediately to go to the lounge, & relaxed very quickly once we were there. We could hear his dad & grandparents chatting, which I found comforting. I told B that I thought he'd done a pretty good job of holding it together (hey, he didn't scream) & told him that he was different than most people in his feelings about eating animals, & that was ok. He told me that every time someone cut into their meat he felt like they were cutting him (!). Poor kid. Once he was calm I asked if he'd like his salad (which he'd been too upset to eat at the table) & he said he did. So he munched greens & I sipped wine, & I realised that I was having a nice time. C & his parents were nearby, B was comfortable, & I had a really nice glass of reisling to enjoy. It was one of those stolen moments, when you never expect to be having fun, but you are. I have been thinking so much lately about life with B, in the midst of writing my sermon on life in Autismland, & it was nice to be living one of those unexpected times that I've been trying so hard to capture for my sermon.

B had school today, so C & I spent the time with his parents, visiting our neighbour's studio (she does lovely things with herbs, fabrics, photos of flowers, & teas) & then out to lunch at the tea place Roo & I visited just a couple weeks ago. We picked B up afterward & they got to see B's school for the first time & meet a couple of his teachers. B was in a great mood, having had a really good music class & anticipating 5 days off school :) B opted out of a trip to the bakery with grandparents & dad, & stayed home to watch some new InuYasha with me. While we all were having afternoon tea (they'd bought petit fours at the bakery) B decided to "mine" the basement for some lego sets that had been put away. He happily rediscovered them in the kitchen while we had tea in the dining room, & even was fairly cheerful about taking them all upstairs to his room (by himself!) while I got ready to make dinner. He watched some of his Narnia dvds while I made dinner (the old BBC ones, not the new movie) & was good company at dinner. He's been really good about accepting hugs & kisses from grandparents while at home.

Tomorrow will be our first day all together, although dad & grandparents will be going to an art exhibit in the afternoon (it's always good to have a break :). We have decided to order out for pizza tomorrow, instead of eating out as originally planned. I'll pre-watch more InuYasha tonight, so we'll have something fun to do together tomorrow. So far, so good :)


At 11:25 PM, Blogger Kristina Chew said...

"one of those stolen moments, when you never expect to be having fun, but you are"

Lisa, this is so true! Just had one the other night with Charlie---he was rolling around on our bed and making a mess of the covers and then giving me bear hugs and squealing word-sounds and I kept cracking up. Then Charlie got even sillier.....

Too much fun!


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