Thursday, April 19, 2012

The curse of the 2nd visit

Today's morning visit went about as well as the 2nd visit we had with Vlado back in 2010. I didn't even blog about that day because I didn't want to remember it. But now, I'm wishing I would have so I could remember how I felt. I guess I don't really need that though because I'm feeling it again now.

The first part of our visit was good. Vlado and "little brother" put puzzles together and worked really well together. I was impressed that he knows how to work puzzles almost as well as Vlado. We still couldn't get eye contact and he seemed irritated when we tried to have him put his head up. We heard lots of humming and some other stimming noises, and some grunts when a puzzle piece didn't fit. But it was overall ok.

Then they had us go outside to the playground area. At first everything was good. He wandered all over playing with different outside toys. Honey pushed him on the swing some. And they passed a ball back and forth a couple times. Then it happened. The bus that takes the kids to school pulled into the driveway. He LOVES school from what we've been told. When one of the ladies told him that he wasn't going to school today, he LOST IT! He screamed, went limp and threw himself to the ground. When I picked him up, he slammed his head backward and head butted me...I have quite the lump on my forehead. Nobody could calm him down. And trust me, several people tried. I just stood there feeling completely helpless. They took him upstairs and had us wait for a few minutes. When he saw us again, he started stimming and rocking from foot to foot. We were told that when his routine gets interrupted, he reacts like this. I am beginning to suspect he might be on the autism spectrum. Most of the time (even when he is doing what he wants to do) he seems to be in his own world. When he looked at me today, he seemed to look through me.

Pray for us! We have another visit this afternoon that I pray goes better. He is so fearful of anything new. And when he doesn't want to go somewhere, he is practically impossible to move. He is a strong child!

This was the morning visit before his fit
Maybe 10 minutes before the bus showed up.  But for this moment, he was happy with his snack


  1. My friend, we are praying! ((hugs))

  2. Praying for you guys. Don't worry about autism yet! What you're seeing is most likely purely institutional behavior, even the stimming noises and seeming disconnected from everything. Asher was EXACTLY the same way! Oh, and you should have heard him when he saw that bus come and he didn't get to go! He was NOT a happy boy. It took Asher until the nearly the end of our visits (and I had 22 visits in all) before he seemed to be "with" me and not off in another world. Axel's foster family said he was the same way when they got him. Remember he doesn't understand a word you're saying, so you're nothing more than Charlie Brown teacher voice to him. He has no reason to connect to you yet. After many visits he'll start to understand your body language, particularly if you use lots of repetition in the activities you do. (follow the same routine in your visits if you can to help him predict what you expect of him.) Really, you should have heard the first conversations Dean and I had after my first few visits. I was really worried!