It may not be all about the cake…


This was not supposed to be another month of updated re-runs, but I keep running into the same situations or anniversaries so that is what has happened. I do have plenty of posts banging around in my head; I just haven’t gotten around to writing them.

DC’s Dad just came back from seven months in Florida and we are up against the same situation as in the post below. DC does not want to go out of his way to see him. Not because he doesn’t like his Dad – he just has gotten out of the habit of seeing him.  He’s been gone for as I said 7 months and now here comes this guy trying to mess up his schedule.

He called and asked to see DC on Sunday as Sundays turned out to be DC’s pick last year, but he immediately said no. He said no to Saturday as well until his Dad offered to take him out to dinner. He agreed but wanted to be sure that he was coming home right after dinner.

I am sure he will get over this as he did last year. I can not blame him for feeling the way he does, nor will I ever force him to go. I want him to know it is his decision. Once he gets used to him being back, I am sure he will come around, if he doesn’t then I’m sure we will figure out something so he will see his Dad without stomping all over his decision. 

So it may not be all about the cake this year, but I am sure, it will not be refused if offered…

Will there be cake? (from 5/2015)

cakeDC’s father was in Florida for the winter. He left in mid-November. DC did get to see him on the day after Christmas for dinner when DC, Doug and I were in Florida on vacation.

IMG_0478

 

His dad came back from Florida in May for the summer. One of DC’s first visits with his dad was on a Sunday. They went to his Aunt’s house for DC’s belated birthday party. His dad was not here for his birthday and his Aunt was ill at the time, so the party she planned to have for him right around his birthday had to be put on hold. They made up for it that Sunday though. DC was happy, he loves his birthday and nothing could be better than to be still celebrating his birthday two months later and let’s not forget the cake! Cake is very important to DC!

His father asked to take him on the following Wednesday, so DC went to his father’s house and came home in the morning in time for his transportation to take him to work. It was only a few days later on Sunday that DC had his seizure. He was supposed to go to his father’s on the following Wednesday, but we decided to cancel since it had only been a few days since the seizure and I was not comfortable letting him out of my sight.

A week later, his dad took him to his Aunt’s house again, this time to celebrate Father’s Day with the rest of his family. DC came home happily listing everything he had to eat because that is what is important. (He did ask me about “cake” before he left that morning and I told him that there may not always be a cake every time he goes to his Aunt’s house…..but yes, there was a cake 🙂 ).

When his dad returned him on that Sunday he asked if he could take him again on Wednesday. DC got frustrated and said “No! I don’t want to!”. He does this at times – he says no, without meaning to or without really listening to what he is saying “no” to. I told him not to worry, we had nothing scheduled on Wednesday and it would be fine for him to go to Dad’s. After his dad left he continued to go on about not going. I thought that he might be confused so I brought him to the calendar to show him that there was nothing going on that day. I wrote “Dad’s House” on the calendar. DC got angry and yelled “Cross Out! No!”.

From the many years spent crawling around in DC’s head trying desperately to figure things out, I had an idea about what was going on here, but I left it alone for a while. When I talked to him again a few hours later and got the same response, I decided I had to call his dad the next morning. As I said, I had an idea about what was going on but first I wanted to be sure that nothing happened, even something as small as the power going out for a split second, or the dog jumping on him, or a piece of furniture in different place, would be enough to cause this anxiety. There was nothing that he could think of.

I told him what I thought this was all about. DC hadn’t seen him in over 6 months. He was now used to not seeing his dad and only talking to him on the phone. Even before he left for Florida, he had not taken DC twice a week for many years, it was always once a week – every other Sunday and every other Monday. Now he is home and DC, with his own agenda in his head, and also quite used to not seeing Dad, feels as if Dad is “cramping his style” for lack for a better term. That, combined with his seizure and probably not wanting to sleep anywhere but home was making him a bit anxious. He loves to see his dad, don’t get me wrong, but he is used to what he is used to and it will take a little time for him to get used to something else. His dad suggested that I ask DC what day he would like to go to his house.

Later that day I did ask DC if he wanted to pick a day that he wanted to go. There was no fussing and no anxiety, it was his choice. He immediately wrote “Dad’s House” on Sunday. I told him that I would call his father to see if he was available that day. As it turned out, he wasn’t. I told DC that Dad had to work on Sunday (he didn’t, but it was easier than trying to explain “other plans”) I asked him if he wanted to make another choice. He chose Wednesday! The same day he was so adamant about not going!

Wednesday came and he was happy to go and he was still happy when he came home.

What have I taken away from all of this?

~ He needs time to get used to the fact that his father is going to be a part of his schedule again, at least until winter comes.

~ We need to make sure that DC is allowed to have some say in the matter and give him a choice of dates.

And….. you might think I am trying to be funny or making a joke, but I know my child…..

~ I am absolutely 100% certain that when I first gave him a choice and he opted for Sunday right away, it was only because he thought there would be cake……

 

 

 

 

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4 thoughts on “It may not be all about the cake…

  1. I remember reading this last year I love it because of course who wouldn’t pick the when there most likely to be cake!! I live how this all explains how important it is to be patient and let them have some control over their lives. I really struggle to remember that sometimes. Coopers first instinct is almost always to say “no”, but if you present things appropriately you almost always get a “yes”.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Great post! I love how you allowed it to be his decision and how he still chose Wednesday. My son’s both have autism, one is 3 and the other is 5. Giving them choices and allowed them control over more things is difficult but I too am finding that as long as they have a choice and its on their terms the anxiety lessens and things go much more smoothly. It’s definitely a practice in thinking outside of the box. Someday, I hope to be as cool and collected as you in those situations. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Haha – no one would ever accuse me of being cool and collected 😃. It was like a big light bulb went off – he’s 25 and I’m so used to doing and deciding everything that I didn’t realize that he could chose for himself. Sometimes it takes a little while for things to sink in.

      Like

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