Back to school

The kids went back to school this week after two weeks off. They’re lucky, it’s only a three day week, with Easter Monday at the beginning and Anzac Day on the Friday. I found these holidays quite challenging. My regular readers may remember that I’m studying counselling and I still had to do that over the school break. Not that it’s a particularly time consuming course, it’s just hard to do with kids at home. And I never realised how much my youngest Bridie likes to share every little thought! Anyway they’re all back to school. I did panic for a little while, Beth came down with a cold. She kindly waited until Sunday rather than spoil her holidays with being ill. Just long enough to make me worry that I would have her home. And boy howdy did she play on it. She should have been born in the olden days with smelling salts and fainting with hand on forehead. Last night she even said to me ‘you need to let me stay home tomorrow’. I of course said that no, she only had one day left this week, she was bloody well going. This morning I caught her out. She’d had the runs a bit when on her melatonin and for a few days there I kept her home as she’d need to go straight after her shower. I went to check on her getting dressed this morning and she was still in the bathroom. I yelled at her to hurry up and she was sitting there on the loo with her puppy dog eyes telling me she has the runs, that she’ll have to stay home after all. In my sympathetic mummy voice I told her to hurry up and go and get dressed. So up she got and there was nothing there! So she’s figured that one out.

I took Beth to a podiatrist in the holidays as she has been walking pidgeon toed for a while. In my last post I was toying up taking her to a physiotherapist but ended up trying a podiatrist first and he was excellent. Firstly he ordered her some terrific New Balance runners at a discount, velcro ladies size 10s are hard to come by so it was a welcome surprise that he could get them. He then gave us an exercise to do. We put two strips of masking tape in a line to teach her to walk straight. He said if she can do it with ease then to bring her back and he’d fit her for particular orthotics. If not then he’d refer us to a physio who specialises in these issues, meaning it’s coming from the hips. Luckily she did it easily, meaning it’s habit and can be rectified. I was impressed, he didn’t try to sell us the orthotics first up, he didn’t charge any extra over the enhanced primary care plan that we had through the doctor, and he wasn’t fazed by Beth being a totally bored teenager having to do stupid things. And when she got off the chair and did her jump up and down and flinging her head back he simply said”It’s so exciting getting new shoes isn’t it?!” I can highly recommend him.

Beth has been rather communicative lately. In fact she’s been in ‘our world’ a lot which has been wonderful to see. One of the lovely times was when she walked past me a couple of weeks ago. I smiled and she looked at me and gave me a really nice smile back. I know that doesn’t sound like much but it really is. She may smile when she thinks it’s required, she’s often smiling while looking off into the distance but she rarely spontaneously smiles and looks right at you. Other things have happened too. I might be in traffic and muttering something under my breath and she (seeming deep in ipad games and loud music) comments on what I’ve said. One the way to and from Beth’s school we often see a flock of birds, flying in the same air space all the time. I saw them yesterday and said more to myself ‘there’s our birds’ and Beth asked where I meant. And then, even better, she followed my finger with her eyes and saw them. Another amazing thing for her. Unfortunately much of her joining in with family things is her being a bitch to others. Telling Bridie off if she farts (Beth is the biggest trumpet bum in the family!) Telling Bill he needs to get a hair cut. Correcting the kids if they say something wrong. And being a shitstirrer. Bridie asked me to stop singing in the car, Beth either sings louder or asks me to put a) One Direction on (because Bridie has decided she hates them) or b) Mary Poppins on (because Bill hates it). So much as I’m loving Beth joining in I’m having to say things like “If you haven’t got anything nice to say, don’t say anything” or just a good old “Butt out!” I can’t win!

About Sarah

Mother of an autistic child wanting to write about my personal experiences
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