Menopausal mom to 2 young adult sons (one with ASD, ADHD, tic/seizure disorders and the other with attitude).

Sunday, 21 October 2018

Travelling with Adult Autism

Most of our friends are slowly becoming empty-nesters.
Most of our friends are starting to travel extensively to far away places for long periods of time.
Most of our friends are travelling as a pair. 

We travel as a trio for the most part. I refer to Riley as our “third wheel” (spoken with love and affection of course). My friend’s term of endearment for their third is “ball and chain”. I’m stealing that from her because I love it and I think it sounds more ummm…endearing than third wheel. 

The last couple of trips we have taken as a trio, I have been more aware of things that typically a person would probably not notice or even have to think about unless you are travelling with an adult-child with special needs. Things that have just become our “normal” in Riley World.

Having to explain to airport personnel/security for the umpteenth time that “He has autism” when they comment that he should be carrying his own passport/boarding pass etc. In my inside voice I’m saying “Sure…I’ll let him carry his own passport and let’s see how smoothly THAT goes.”  Just to clarify, we have never had a bad experience…just gets tiring sometimes. But then there are the times when Riley will answer questions, ALL the questions repeating the person’s name (because he has noticed their name tag) EACH AND EVERY TIME and it brings a smile to that person’s face. 

Making sure there is enough “down time” throughout the day so Riley doesn’t become “unglued”. This means G and I take turns doing things because Riley can not be left alone. I will admit, this also works in my favour for those times when A/C is more desirable than walking around in +90F temps. 

Walking down the street (not crowded AT ALL) and noticing Riley is getting waaaaaay too close to the people in front of him and you know he’s not going to slow down or back off. Can you say “personal space”?!?!?  He won’t run into them, he’ll just keep “on their heels” (and probably in the same step if at all possible) with them. And no, it would not cross his mind to go around them because he’s much too “polite” to pass anybody.

Having a thick skin so when you’re in a crowded space and he starts getting agitated and talking loud and saying things like “SHUT UP YOU STUPID LADY!  I’M GOING TO RUN AWAY!!” you take it in stride.  Sure beats when he used to yell “DON’T HIT ME!” 

Still, we consider ourselves lucky to be able to travel at all. 

Our criteria is really quite simple. Familiar, routine and under 3 hrs air time is optimum. 
Our destinations may be the same most of the time but who can pass up a 4+ star hotel/accommodations for next to nothing. 
But most of all…our tour guide has the best smile EVER!  

Wednesday, 11 July 2018

Sandwich Maker 101

Now I can’t remember exactly when Riley started eating grilled cheese sandwiches. It was at some point during our Operation IFO era. We started that back in September 2013. Five. Yes 5!  Looooong. Years. Ago! 

The only food to successfully come out of that hair-pullingpoke-my-eye-out-with-a-fork…ummm "trying" year was a grilled cheese sandwich.

Today was our second attempt at using the sandwich maker. I decided “Riley” needed a break after Monday so he wouldn’t get toooo stressed out thinking about it.

I have to say I was very surprised when I called him and he didn’t protest too much when he saw the setup. Some things do improve with age.

I wasn’t going to record his buttering technique again but how else will you be able to track his progress?!?  In case you did not know or do not notice in this clip, Riley has quite the aversion to getting his hands messy. 

If you can't see the here to watch.

I have an aversion to blobs of butter so will admit to smoothing out the butter before we proceeded. Not sure why this clip is blurry…perhaps I got some of that butter on the lens. 

If you can't see the here to watch.

Next…checking the status.  On Monday we set a timer but that didn’t work out all that well (it got a little overcooked) so decided we would just “sneak a peak” every so often. That is if he could get the lid open.  So many things that one takes for granted.

If you can't see the here to watch.


If you can't see the here to watch.

Oh, and just because he eats a food does not necessarily mean he enjoys the food……

If you can't see the here to watch.