Friday, 16 November 2012

Out & about

I was so very proud of River today. We had a really hectic day, full of situations that I thought River would struggle with- and he managed brilliantly with every single one. I think he actually found our day less stressful than I did!

Our day started with a carpet fitter arriving, to lay the carpet on our two flights of stairs. Usually, River gets very anxious when people come round, but he was totally relaxed at this strange man coming into our house! I think it was probably for a couple of reasons: River seems to really like men, and will stare at them and want to look at them! Also, the carpet fitter pretty much ignored River, whereas most people that come round want to talk to him & interact with him. So River just ran up & down the room, making noises, and occasionally glancing at the fitter.
Soon after he arrived, the fitter started hammering and bashing things- really, really loudly. River was fine! He got quite excited, running up & down, but not distressed at all.
I had a doctor's appointment, so we had to get the bus into town. I haven't taken River on a bus for about a year- the idea of being trapped in a moving vehicle with a screaming autistic toddler whilst being stared at by 20 strangers really doesn't appeal to me! But River really surprised me. To start with, the bus was 30 minutes late. River didn't understand why we were stationary & got a bit upset, but luckily I'd packed lots of breadsticks & rice cakes to see us through. When we finally got on the bus, he was as good as gold! He stayed very quiet & gazed out of the window.
We then arrived at the doctors & got called straight in. Again, he just sat in his pushchair and munched on some apple!
We had a while to wait for our bus home & we were running low on snacks, so I made the brave decision to venture into the nearby supermarket. River + supermarkets = disaster. Every time. But I thought we could nip in & out super-quickly. But the strangest thing happened; River was really relaxed! So relaxed in fact that I was able to browse a couple of aisles and get a few bits & bobs. Even queuing at the checkout didn't phase him!
I'm not sure if it was because we'd just walked along a busy road so he was a bit desensitised to the noise, or whether it was because he was in his buggy and therefore felt safe in his cocoon, instead of being in the trolley & at eye-level to the other shoppers. Or it may have been because it was in the afternoon & he may have been a bit sleepy. Whatever it was, it was lovely!!
We then got a very packed bus home. River's pushchair had to be parked right next to a newborn baby who was having a scream. River detests babies, mainly the noise of them. He glanced at me a couple of times but didn't seem particularly distressed by it. He quite liked holding onto my finger for the journey- I like to think that he was getting some comfort from it.

So yes, a very successful day. So many things that would've caused a meltdown a short while ago- a stranger coming round, loud hammering, having to wait for a bus, having to go on a bus, going to the doctors, going to the supermarket, being near a screaming newborn....but he did so very well. And I'm so very proud of him! Xx


  1. That's so lovely! Yet again funny little snippets of progress when you're least expecting them. Do you think him being at nursery, and therefore having to get used to different people, objects and volume levels etc, has helped him deal with new situations a bit better?

    1. I've just realised I haven't replied! Yes, the unexpected progress is fab. Yes I think preschool is helping him get used to 'people noise' as we tend to be quite quiet at home Xx