This is Jack sitting beautifully listening to Miss Kathy talk about being careful around the animals.
Jack and Sean watching Angry birds while waiting to ride
Mommy's proudest moments today:
- Jack handled letting other kids ride the horse like a champ- no meltdowns at all.
- Jack decided he did not want the birthday song and with the help of his OT made it very well known- he usually cries at the end of the song, all of the clapping really bothers him, and he recognized this and avoided it.
Most special moment- I was walking to the fields with the boys, holding Nate's hand, and Jack was walking next to us. One minute I looked down and Jack was holding Nate's other hand. I cannot stress enough what a big deal this was. This has never ever happened before, it was such a wonderful sign of affection and it still brings tears to my eyes.
I am proud of myself. I realized as I sat down to write this today that I was more at ease with the boys and their behaviors today than I have ever been. I did not offer one explanation for either of their actions. Now, they were both very very good, but as I said, Nate was shaking rope and running laps for a good part of the party. Jack's anxiety was very obvious at times and I am sure that some people wondered why he opted out of the birthday song. I felt no need to explain. I don't think I uttered the word autism all day, except when talking to the owner of the farm about treatment options before the party. This is a huge first for ME.
Hilary Clinton said it takes a village to raise a child. That's one child, and I assume this child is not on the spectrum. It takes a lot more than that to raise two children on the spectrum. And damn, we have built one Hell of a village over the last several years! I looked around today and behind the kids and parents from Jack's class saw some of the most caring supportive people I have ever known. My mom and dad, my little sister, John's brother, some of my very best friends- Joann and Helen and their families, another special needs family we have connected with who understands our life like no one else ever could, a family from the boys' OT practice. Preschool friends who Jack actually connected with back then- which was huge back then. Jack's OT made the trip to see him- she has been working with him for three years now and has earned that gorgeous Jack smile- not the regular cute smile, but the one reserved for people he really loves. We missed Jack's mimi, one of his most favorite people, very very much. She has been an invaluable support to our family during our "rebuilding" process, and Jack just LOVES her. But we will see her tomorrow. All of these people are here for the boys, here for our family, and their presence made Jack, and frankly me and John feel secure enough to really let our guard down and have a great time. I know that Jack will never forget this experience- and all John and I could do for most of the party was grin at each other like idiots, because we knew we kicked some serious butt on the party front today and our little boy was thrilled.