“2 months of rest and no homework!”
I smile to myself as I listen to Lincoln tell me why he loves summer vacation.
He has come up to sneak under the covers with him Mom who uses her first day of vacation to sleep in past the regular 5:15am wake up.
He has actually already been up watching videos on the computer for an hour or so before anyone else started stirring and now that everyone else but his Mother and the puppy are up, he will slink up the stairs undetected and steal a moment one-on-one with his Mom.
He snuggled in, face to face with me, and I open my eyes to look into his beautiful hazel ones.
He has an adorable sprinkle of chocolate freckles across his sun-kissed cheeks and nose. He is already wearing his signature “blue” glasses (his favorite colour and a common favorite for Autistics) He pulls the furry blanket up to his chin and smiles sweetly.
“What will we do today?” he asks
“What ever you want Son. It is going to be an awesome day!”
I enjoy a few more leisurely minutes in the comfy coziness of my cocoon bed and then pull back the covers and turn to look at my 9 yr old boy who is smiling and rolling himself into the covers.
“I need some coffee, then the beach! Go get dressed.”
He runs off, and finds some clothes. He is finally getting himself dressed all by himself. He has grown into a big boy in the last 365 days. I am proud to watch my sturdy kid walk down the hall with a purpose.
We decide to pack a picnic lunch and head out to the Lake.
On the way, I am asked if we would see an American Porcupine again in a tree.
I smile to myself and shake my head.
“probably not dude. That was a year ago, I’m not sure that the porcupine will still inhabit the same tree. Maybe though, who knows”
Last year, we saw a porcupine in a tree. I had no idea that they could climb but I was quickly advised that the American variety of porcupine lives in trees. The African ones only live on the ground. I felt stupid for not knowing, I guess that might be due to the way the info was delivered from my ASD 8 yrs old. He figures I should know these things!!
The kids quickly slip into the water and gleefully frolic in the crowd. Lincoln slips out into a quiet spot and finds a relaxing moment of textile fun!
Just as he did last year, he scoops up the cool, slick sand at the bottom of the lake and lets it run through his fingers, over his hand. He shuts one eye to focus on the muddy treasure, the feel so appealing and enjoyable. He spends half the afternoon playing on his own. He will share with a brother if they sidled over…normally either plastering them with the soothing mud or splattering it over there sodden hair.
I suppose if anyone was watching they might think he was being odd, and maybe he was. That is just the nature of Autism.
Sometimes, the things that a child on the spectrum enjoys MAY be considered odd, weird, strange of a little unorthodox. I guess to the general public it is. But if you really think about it there is nothing strange, odd or different but maybe we are just so restricted in our behavior that we worry far too much about what others may think to simply enjoy the word for what it is.
He looked at the lake and decided just to enjoy it as his senses reacted. The warm sandy under his toes felt good.
IT FELT GOOD.
Lifting the sand and enjoying it by running it through his hands repeatedly might seem odd but it does not hurt anyone, it only gives pleasure. Simple pleasure.
Sitting on the beach, watching him over the edge of my magazine full of current day horrors, The Ukraine, the obesity rate in America, the truth about sugar…I wondered who really had their priorities in check.
I folded the McLean’s magazine and instead closed my eyes and enjoyed the sunshine.
I won’t pretend he does not act different or react different.
But sometimes I just wonder who has it right. Me, or him? Society or the small percent of Autistics in the world?
With an encyclopedia tucked down the side of the chair, pen in hand, he sits and watches you tube videos about his favorite animals.
Just look at his face.He is learning, thinking, cataloging information.
He is happy and free.
43 more blissful days of summer vacation…..