Playdate jitters

January 12, 2009 at 10:03 pm 13 comments

     It was a momentous day for C – a playdate at our house with a boy from his class. His first such playdate, at our house or anywhere, with any boy from his class. I’ve felt as though he’s given up on the boys completely; he doesn’t say hello to any of them in the mornings when he gets to school anymore. He told me recently that he’s started going to the end of the boys’ line instead of the usual alphabetical order because the boys say mean things to him or poke him, so he just keeps getting further and further to the back of the line so they won’t bother him anymore.

     So never have I felt such desire for a playdate to go well as I did today, and it reminded me of a first date. Combine that with the C’s announcement, as he climbed into the car with A after school, that he had moved his desk to be near A’s because they’re “best buddies now,” and the pressure was on. I admit to a brief moment of concern over whether it will last and what will happen if it doesn’t. Fortunately, it all went well, and A’s Mom came just in the nick of time when I could tell C was done.

     Most telling for me, however, and perhaps the most achingly sweet, was C’s pronouncement this evening at bedtime. “I wish every day could be January 12th,” he said, “because then A could be here all the time.”

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Entry filed under: autism.

I have no idea what I’m doing Missing in action

13 Comments Add your own

  • 1. mama mara  |  January 13, 2009 at 5:28 am

    As I read this, I was literally holding my breath with hope that the playdate went well. Big, happy exhale!

    I wish every day were January 12 too!

    Reply
  • 2. Jesch  |  January 13, 2009 at 7:17 am

    Phew.

    Reply
  • 3. pixiemama  |  January 13, 2009 at 10:06 am

    Sweet C.

    Good mama. We blatantly disregard the urging for these social interactions. With three other kids in the house and Foster’s unpredictability, I could care less about playdates. Not enough Xanax in my system to add another breathing creature to this household (yes, I know I sound crazy. I am crazy.)

    Nope, not crazy one bit. I actually HATE having a bunch of extra kids running around the house. Despite wanting to be the cool Mom where everyone wants to hang out at our house, the noise drives me bonkers. I never realize how quiet we are until there’s extra kids here! Guess that’s only child-ville.

    Reply
  • 4. Good Fountain  |  January 13, 2009 at 10:55 am

    I’m glad it went well!! And i hope it continues to!!

    Reply
  • 5. therocchronicles  |  January 13, 2009 at 12:55 pm

    How wonderful for him to experience! I’m so glad it went well.

    Reply
  • 6. Lois  |  January 13, 2009 at 1:16 pm

    ^5 ❤

    Love that now that I know what it is. I’ll have to show C, although he probably already knows…

    Reply
  • 7. BQkimmy  |  January 13, 2009 at 5:14 pm

    Aw, what a sweetie. Glad his playdate went well. Hope he has many more.

    Thanks! I hope so too!!!

    Reply
  • 8. Angie  |  January 13, 2009 at 5:51 pm

    Oh, your posts are heartbreaking! I’m SO glad his big date went well. We all deserve a best buddy. Remember how we used to laugh about how we’d grow old together, living on the same street?! Hugs to you both!

    And think how close we came to that, actually!!! It would’ve been so fun. Ah, well. Maybe someday. I haven’t given up on rooming together at the old folks’ home. 😉

    Reply
  • 9. robinaltman  |  January 13, 2009 at 8:55 pm

    Yay! I’m so glad it went well!!!! I hope his girlfriend doesn’t get jealous….. All this socializing could make for a new Paten Place.

    You hit the nail on the head – when he told me he moved his desk away from S to sit by A, that was my first question – “How does S feel about that?” Fortunately, she seems okay. She’s still coming over to play this weekend, and I had lunch with the kids yesterday and she seemed fine. Whew…

    Reply
  • 10. looksgoodinpolkadots  |  January 14, 2009 at 11:48 am

    Wonderful!

    Play dates scare me!!!!!

    Me too.

    Reply
  • 11. hopeauthority  |  January 14, 2009 at 11:17 pm

    So happy for C! Kudos to the mom of A for raising a nice boy instead of a little jackass who pokes. Any chance (without appearing like a stalker) of getting yourself a coffee date with A’s Mom when the boys are in school? Nothing says “future playdates” like cementing a friendship with the playmate’s mom…unless she’s a jackass, of course.

    That made me laugh! Mom is definitely nice, and we do know each other a little bit outside of school – gotta love a small town and the PTO board! 😉

    Reply
  • 12. goodmum  |  January 15, 2009 at 10:15 am

    Aw, I just want to wrap him up in a big hug. He’s so sweet. How wonderful that this went so well for him! YAY!!

    It was definitely good. I’m pretty glad we got the Wii system for Christmas, lol!

    Reply
  • 13. Becky  |  January 15, 2009 at 6:20 pm

    Every time I read your blogs about the way that C. is being treated at school, I get terribly upset. It seems that many of your blog friends have the same experiences. I’ve felt uncomfortable saying anything, but these rude, mean, offensive, bullying behaviors happen very seldom at my school. I know it, because the children are sent to me or the parental calls come to me. Doesn’t your school have a zero tolerance for that kind of behavior? We have a clear behavior rubric and children of all ages are held accountable. I’m not saying that it never happens, but each year the number of incidents seem to get smaller. Schools can and should be in a great deal of trouble when children are constantly being harassed. The staff in my building has, also, had difficult classes, but every one of them work with me to hold children accountable for their behavior. Your children have basic rights and feeling safe at school is one of them.

    Oh, this is a tough one. I really, really, really love C’s school, as you probably know via J & T (and I’m not just saying that because people from his school read this – I really do love his school). Yes, they do have a zero tolerance policy that is very consistently enforced. C’s teacher has an additional behavioral intervention where she has the offending child say 4 nice things about and to the other child.

    Here’s the issues: first, when I am at school with C, I am watching him, and mostly watching him only. I am always looking for clues to help him learn how to navigate the social waters. Things I can help him understand or things I can suggest he try. So I see everything for C. And I don’t think you fabulous teachers can see everything for every child – especially since most of the problems happen in that unstructured, out of class time – waiting in line, at recess, at lunch, etc. That’s where C struggles. The things he tells me about I take with a grain of salt, because sometimes he instigates the problem and doesn’t even realize it. He gets too close to someone in line, for example. Of course I don’t like the response from the other kid, but C also needs to at least know not to get in someone’s space even if he doesn’t really understand why.

    And finally, I think what’s happening to C is very, very subtle. I recently watched a couple of boys pretending to whisper a secret in front of him in a little game to exclude him from their group, for example. But C didn’t even notice, which I was both thankful for and sad about. I do see some of it as a precursor to bullying behavior – but it’s not so outright just yet, you know? I think he does feel safe at school – he absolutely comes home happy every day. But I wonder how much he’s not able to tell me in terms of his feelings, so I do worry about his stress level at school.

    If asked, C would say he is friends with everyone in his class, and that they all like him. His teachers have always said the same thing. And in class, I believe it’s true. But outside of class, I feel like it’s a completely different story. All I can say is this year, thank goodness for a handfull of fabulous girls in his class or I think it would’ve been a very lonely year.

    Thanks for commenting. I’m so glad you did. 🙂

    Reply

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