Equine Therapy

Beth and I are going to see an equine therapist this afternoon. I had spoken with Beth about this a while back, then on the weekend when we were talking about her seeing a specialist to help with her obsession with Paul she asked about it. I had forgotten all about her to be honest! I spoke with Michelle (the therapist) on Monday and she sounded lovely. To start with I was worried that it might be a bit fluffy for our needs, as in not hard core enough because the behaviour is really out of control. But the more I spoke with her the more I thought that we could get something out of it.

One of the things we discussed was redirecting Beth’s obsession to a more positive thing. I’m not really sure what that could be mind you, obsessions themselves scare me. I remember when she was in Primary School she loved playing in the sandbox. She does have a bit of a thing with salt and she sometimes eats sand. I think it’s called pica? I didn’t realise she was doing it until I couldn’t flush one of her poos and saw that all the poo was washed away and it was sand in the bottom of the loo! Anyway, sorry, that’s another story. I was chatting with a friend who had a boy on the spectrum and she said that when her son was in early intervention they had a child obsessed with digging in the sand. They said they tried to redirect and his new obsession became anal exploration! His own of course! So sand doesn’t seem so bad after all in hindsight.

We also discussed learning about our bodies and how we feel when we do certain things. Michelle said for example that a horse might get startled and do that things with their lips while breathing out. Then the one next to them will often do the same thing in support. She would explain things through the animals doing this so as it’s not all directed at what Beth could do, so she thinks about how others calm themselves. I must say, I was really impressed with her knowledge of not only how the mind works, but how the body responds. As she can be paid with Beth’s NDIS funding I think it’s definitely worth a try.

Beth’s birthday was on Good Friday so we had a lovely long weekend. We went to the beach on Friday for a walk and a play in the water, it was beautiful weather. And we had lunch with Grandpa next door. Beth had a revolting meltdown there so her and I came home. The beach seemed to calm her down though. On Saturday Bill and his friend Jimmy took Beth to see Kung Fu Panda 4 and to the pancake parlour. I went and had a nice head and face massage! Then on Sunday I took Beth to have one too, and she loved it! Monday Paul took Beth to the zoo which was nice. Again, she wasn’t as bad when out. Apparently they’re moving heaps of animals to Werribee Zoo, they have a massive area as big as the whole zoo for the elephants which is exciting! I am wondering whether they will make the zoo itself a larger aquarium perhaps?

Yesterday was Autism Awareness Day. For years I’ve heard this after the event and it’s annoyed me that it was never even celebrated at her special needs high school, let alone any other organisations or carers groups. I messaged our managers and the people that run the social media group through my work and asked if we could wear blue as a tribute to those on the spectrum. They were very receptive and said they will add it to our calendar from now on, to go with Harmony Day and International Women’s Day amongst other important days. I was so touched, and even more so when I turned up and work and, one by one, my coworkers turned up wearing something blue. Not wanting to go too big I wore blue earrings, there were necklaces, headbands, scarves and hats. I nearly cried when I saw everybody, it means so much to me to have such a supportive team who are there for me on a day they know is incredibly special to me.

Wish us luck this afternoon! xx

About Sarah

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