Sometimes I forget that Beth has autism. Not fully, not ever fully. It’s pretty bloody obvious at times. I don’t have an issue with her having autism. I’m always telling people she’s the easiest of all my kids behaviourally. She’s well behaved, she’s got lovely manners, she does as she’s told. We seem to have missed out on most of the teenage hormones. She’s not violent. She’s not mean (usually). She’s a nice kid and I love her to bits. Then we have moments like today and I remember. I remember all the meltdowns and the embarrassment of some of her behaviour and how she acts like a 2 year old having a tantrum in public and I think ‘how could I have forgotten this? Why can’t she just behave like a bloody 16 year old? I hate f’ing autism sometimes. ‘ I’m not proud of myself when I think things like that. As I say, she’s an ace kid and I’m incredibly proud of her. But sometimes……

We had a nice time yesterday. I was to take Bridie Christmas shopping and Beth decided she wanted to come along. Much to Bridie’s annoyance as she wanted to have a ‘2 girl day’. Bridie had money left from her birthday and she wanted to spend it. We also had some things to buy for their little cousins and I told Beth that she could spend some of her pocket money. As usual she wanted to buy Disney dvds. She has many of them, if she can’t find one she wants to replace it. She also picked a few out a couple of months ago when they were on sale, so I let her have 3 and kept 4 for Christmas. So I don’t really want her to buy dvds at the moment, until we’ve done a bit of a stock check. Anyway, we went shopping yesterday and ended up buying everything that Bridie wanted and one dvd for Beth which I knew she didn’t have so we were all pretty happy with that.

The problem that we had was that the toys we wanted to buy the cousins for Christmas weren’t available at Knox K Mart. Which meant that we were popping in to the Boronia store today, after our osteo appointments. Bridie had a curriculum day today and I gave Beth the day off too because our favourite osteo is leaving and it was the only time we could all get an appointment. All good, nice girly day again, giving Beth a treat of a day off. Our appointments ended at 11 and off we went. I had specifically said we were going to buy the Christmas presents only, that we weren’t having lunch out, that we weren’t shopping for ourselves. Then we got to K Mart and Bridie started. She was hungry and whinged most of the way around. I said we just had to get this and that, we were parked in a half an hour park and if we were really quick I would stop and get them pies on the way home for being good girls. Then it was Beth’s turn. “You mean after we get me a dvd don’t you?” “No Beth, I said we’re not getting you a dvd today remember?” “But I have money, I still have pocket money, today’s about me too!” And the loud crying started, and the wailing, and the snotty face and the screaming of why was I being so mean, why was I not talking back to her, I was ignoring her and it wasn’t fair! And the stares as I stone faced pulled her along behind me as I got what I needed then got the f out of the store! It reminded me of when she was two and didn’t get her own way, in the very same store. And how mortified I was. The only saving grace was that at least now it was pretty bloody obvious that there was something different about my girl because the only way she didn’t look like a two year old having a tantrum was that she didn’t lie down on the floor and kick her legs in the air. I threatened and I muttered under my breath and by the time we got in the car she had been banned from her tablet until 3.30. And still she didn’t shut up! She doesn’t seem to know how to.

The car ride home was vile. I had Bridie cracking it because I had said no pies. I had Beth who just wouldn’t stop. I would say stop talking to me, I want silence in the car on the way home, if you keep going it will be another half an hour. And still she kept going. In a waily high pitched voice. “I promise, I’m sorry, no more ban, stop banning me, why are you angry, I wont do it again, just tell me that I’m not banned.” And the true doozy of the day “I’ll try again tomorrow, maybe tomorrow I can have the day off again and you can take me to K Mart again and I’ll be good. AND you can let me spend some money!” I just got angrier and angrier and wanted her to just stop talking and she just kept going and going. Even when we got home and I told her she could go and read a book she said things such as ‘or play on my tablet’. I (and here’s where I’m not proud) told her that she could go and live with Grandma and Grandpa if she kept it up. By that stage I just wanted her to shut the f up and she just wasn’t. When I went in to check on her she’d put all of her bedding in the wardrobe and was sitting in there reading. Making me feel really bad! She’s just popped out now though and said ‘It’s like a curse you know, this ban that you do to me!’ So maybe I don’t feel that bad after all!

About Sarah

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

  1. I hear you, with much love and much patients and sometimes not. go gentle on yourself.

  2. Sarah says:

    thankyou Carly, that’s lovely of you to say! I know what you’re saying and I’d say the same to any other parent, sometimes it just gets the better of me! x

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