Pit Stop


A few days ago, DC was ready and waiting for his transportation to arrive to bring him to work. I was getting ready for work as well. The car arrived a little bit earlier than usual with a substitute driver. DC left and I went back to getting ready. Normally I leave for work about 5 minutes after the car leaves, but because it arrived early and I was not completely ready, it took another 15 minutes to get out of the door.

My car was parked in the driveway behind the house so you can not see it from the front of the house. I drove out, rounded the corner and headed up the driveway to find his transportation car at the top of the driveway. My initial reaction was one of panic. I was sure that something was wrong,  but the driver was just sitting in the car. Then I noticed that DC was already getting out of the car so my next thought was that he decided he had to use the restroom. I got out of my car and asked what was wrong. The driver told me that he had forgotten his water bottle and was so obsessed about it, she felt she HAD to bring him back to get it. She was hoping that I would still be home. Granted, I am happy that he is so aware of his hydration and so attached to his water bottle. Drinking water was not at the top of his list a few months ago, it was always a battle so I am glad that it has moved up a few rungs on the ladder. Coincidently the one and only time he forgot to bring his water bottle to work since his first seizure (I was at the time convinced it was due to heat), just happened to be the day he had his second seizurehmmmm. I don’t know if he put that together in his mind or if this is just a straight out ‘regular’ obsession, but he does not want to be without it at work.

Now there have been plenty of times when DC was still in school that he tried to get his school bus drivers to stop so he could run into a random house to use the bathroom. (There have also been times, not so long ago while out for a walk when I had to chase him as he was running up some strangers sidewalk towards the door because he decided that he had to use the restroom).  I know how he can be when he forgets something as well. The driver said he kept poking her on her shoulder from the back seat. I get it. But, his school bus drivers, when they knew they had to bring him back home, would always call me to see if I was still home or if I could turn around and come back to meet him. This driver did not try to call and was making no attempt to even get out of the car. I wonder just how, from the driver’s seat with the car running was she going to check to see if I was home? You can not see my car from the front. She did not get out of the car – she just let him out and as I said, under normal circumstances, I would have been gone.

Hopefully in the future someone will call me – yes, I made that clear – very clear.

So how would this particular scenario have played out had I not have been there, you ask? I know exactly how it would have gone.

– DC would have let himself into the house to get his water bottle.

– DC would have left the front door wide open upon exiting the house and returning to the car; prompting the driver to ask if Mom was home. (He never closes the door on the way out, only on the way in – I do not know why.)

– “Yes”, would have been the response – his standard reply to almost any question.

– Driver would have driven away leaving my front door not only unlocked but wide open all day.

– Later that afternoon – assuming all of my possessions were still in the house , his after-work aide would have called to inform me that he found the front door wide open.

– Me,  never knowing or hearing about the forgotten water bottle retrieval mission that morning from DC or anyone else, would have assumed that I had  forgotten to close the door (even though I distinctly remembered doing it).

– Adding further fuel to the notion that I am losing my mind.



Just an FYI – DC is 24. After years and years of training (a topic for another post) he is and has been able to get into the house himself after work. He has either me or staff there but there may be times when someone might be stuck in traffic or late for some other reason and before he had staff, I was always in a race with the bus. I wanted him to be able to get in, lock the door, call me and wait for me or his aide. Since he began having seizures, I do not want him alone for even a few minutes. My point here is – you don’t bring him home with out calling me or letting me know.

The Great Band-Aid Obsession


“All children with Autism love stickers”

—- DC hates stickers! Hates them, but still people insist on giving him stickers, mailing him stickers and putting stickers on him! In the past, anytime we were at an event where a sticker was required, I always had to place it on the back of his shirt – he just could not stand it on the front (he wasn’t thrilled about having it on his back either, but he could tolerate it a little bit more there). Even now that he can tolerate a sticker on his shirt, I will hear about it the entire time it is there and he removes it the second we leave the event.

“All children with Autism love Legos”

—- DC hates Legos! Hates them, but still people insist on giving him Legos (not as much lately, but definitely when he was younger)

“All children with Autism love Minecraft”

—-DC hates Minecraft.

“All children with Autism love things that spin”

Okay, I’ll give you that one…………..

Other than his books and movies, the one thing DC really loves are Band-Aids. I am not completely sure that Band-Aids are on the list of what “Every child with Autism loves” – it is possible, I do not know, but I know that DC just loves them.

I believe the main reason for this obsession, as I mentioned in an earlier post, is that he’s never actually had the need for a Band-Aid – that I can recall.



I mean, I have really been lucky (still knocking wood), so much so that we’ve never had to use a Band-Aid. He loves Band-Aids and wants to wear them so much that he just wears them for no reason, or invents a reason the wear them. The one and only time he cut himself when he fell off his bike – yes, he somehow managed to tip over an adult three-wheeled bike – he was so excited to have a big raspberry on his chest, he wasn’t concerned about the fall, he just wanted a Band-Aid. He was so crushed that the raspberry was much too big for a Band-Aid, that I had to make up a reason to apply one to his leg, just to make him happy.

Band-Aids, especially “character-themed Band-Aids” are on his “odd gifts list” along with the rolls of scotch tape, mentioned in an earlier blog.”

This has been an off and on obsession with him since he was very young. Then, he seemed to forget about it for a few years,  not that he would ever pass up an opportunity to wear a Band-Aid if he happened upon some, but it wasn’t a daily thing.

But now for some reason, the obsession has returned!

It started slowly…….

Rounding out the Collection, we have Mickey Mouse (again, no injury)

Rounding out the Collection, we have Mickey Mouse (again, no injury)

…..just a Band-Aid here and there once in a while, but it has slowly escalated into this:

We were in a department store not too long ago and DC came across a table filled with cases, yes cases, filled with 12 boxes of multiple sizes of Band-Aids.

One would have thought he’d found the Holy Grail!

“Mom! Band-Aids! P-LLLLL-EEEEE-ASE!”

– Yes, we bought them………

The ‘I want a Band-Aid’ hints begin almost every night with…

“Mom. my leg is itchy”

“Oh, really? I don’t see anything”

“Mom, my arm is itchy and my leg is itchy”

He doesn’t always come right out and ask for a Band-Aid, at times he will, but usually he will just continue to tell me his arm, leg or foot is itchy, until I finally give in and say…

“Okay, go ahead”

Then off he goes to apply his 3, 4 or more Band-Aids.

The new swag

The new swag

A few people have wondered and even asked why I “let” him do this.

Why? Seriously, these are the kind of issues that some people think I should be worried about?

I choose my battles and to me, this is not a battle. This is so far removed from a battle, that it is not even worth talking about – with him, that is. Apparently it needs to be explained to others.

He is not hurting anyone. Most of them are applied to his arms or legs – with the exception of one that he put across his nose the other day due to a pimple. It doesn’t interfere with his “work”, his activities or his life in general. It makes him happy. There are so many other/bigger issues to worry about. My time was never spent trying to make him conform to what other people may think to be “normal”. Safety issues – yes, his ability to navigate social or public situations – yes, communication – yes, independence – yes, life skills – yes  but these little things that some people seem hell-bent to correct – no!

I could live without the Band-Aid wrappers all over the house…

DC calls me “Vickie” quite often. I think it is because he is always being told that he is an adult now, so therefore he should be allowed to call me by my first name. I doesn’t bother me in the least – I actually think it is kind of funny. This is one of those “connections” that he’s made in his head – he’s an adult, so he can use first names. I don’t like to discourage these connections that he makes. But some people seem to be horrified by it. Why? He knows I’m his mother. I know he loves me (he tells me all day long). He does still call me Mom more than half of the time and even if he did not, how is this interfering with his progress, his life, his job or anything for that matter? It does not.

I always find it a bit funny when other people point out these little “nothing” issues as ‘something I really need to work on’.

So, back to the Band-Aid situation….

Having just said that he only applies them to his arms, legs or hands……(and apparently he also has a stash in the kitchen, I knew nothing about)……….

please read my Facebook Status 8/6/14:

Last night I was on the phone with an automated system. I had to tell DC more than once to stay quiet because this system picks up any noise. After the fourth attempt, it was clear that the system was not going to take my information , so I gave up. I turned around to find DC with a Band-Aid over his mouth. I guess he didn’t trust himself to keep quiet on his own

And no, I did not get a picture, I was too busy laughing.

Even though I would ever advocate putting a Band-Aid over anyone’s mouth, and never would I encourage him to put a Band-Aid over his own mouth, I was still pretty impressed with his ability to make that connection in his head.

Progress and connections at times come out of the strangest of situations…………………