Friday, January 20, 2017

Hello 2017

Wow, where has the time gone? I have so many little stories to tell but am unsure of where to start!

Our family recently spent five weeks with my side of the family in New Zealand, including three nights in Sydney. Nick was a rock star. He handled everything that was thrown his way, and believe me, we packed a lot into our holiday. I am just blown away by his resilience, flexibility and gentle ways.

Nick was bombarded with family life, noise and mayhem. Very different to our home life back in South Africa. I do confess that he had far too much screen time with that iPad of his... but hey ho, I noticed all the other teens also glued to their screens.

I was reminded of our first visit to a restaurant four years ago and it highlighted to me how much my Nick has progressed. Thanks go to RDI and our lovely team of people behind the scenes.

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Travel and the Autistic Teen

There is much excitement in our house. We are off to New Zealand next week to spend some quality time with my side of the family. As you can imagine, the trip is a big deal for us because Nick is also coming along. Fingers and toes crossed that the flights (three of them to NZ) go smoothly without any stress. The different time zone is going to be a challenge but let's not think about that just yet!

Nick's most favorite sign of the moment is 'plane'. If I pretend that I don't know what he is signing, he will write it on my phone or his iPad.

Now, I am not a Social Stories kind of gal. I prefer to expose Nick to different experiences, slowly and mindfully. Each adventure we have, whether it be a trip to the dentist or some form of travel, I am very mindful of how much 'challenge' Nick can cope with (edge +1). I know when Nick hits his tipping point, how much further to encouragement him and what accommodations will help him.

For sure, I do prep him a little bit about future events. However, it will be a simple comment made a few days in advance and/or I may use some sort of visual prop. A prop could be something like a basic calendar on the door of my fridge or the suitcase sitting in his bedroom.

Although I don't feel the need to create a story about what is going to happen in the future, I do like to create visual memories of past experiences. Nick can then look at those memories and share his adventures with others and (hopefully) call upon his previous knowledge during a new adventure.

Anyways, a very quick post from me as I have a 101 things to do and am running out of spare time fast..........