Before the baby was born, we planned on doing a few last renovations to our house to make sure we could use some of the rooms we’d not been using. A secondary goal in this, of course, was to let the wife move her study out of the third bedroom, and down to where my study, so that we could move the Monster into his own room. The goal of this, of course, was to let the baby move into the nursery and out of the master bedroom.
For anyone who knows us, this is not a surprise that we drag our feet – just a fact of life, sometimes, when you have a child with Autism, but more so when inertia’s just a bit difficult to overcome naturally. (The biggest hurdle, honestly, was getting her desk cleaned up and ready to move.)
So, Sunday, the desk was finally moved from the spare bedroom down to the study, which meant there was room to clean up the bedroom and prepare it for moving the Monster over from the nursery. The only concern that we had, as we were preparing the room for moving all of his stuff, was how he would react to the change.
One of the most frequent symptoms I hear about, when it comes to Autism, is behavioral rigidity – namely, change is resisted fiercely because it’s unpredictable. The Monster isn’t horrible when it comes to this – he can be difficult at times, but not in a manner that’s easily gauged in advance – but this was going to be a major change. He’s been in the nursery since shortly after his birth, once he transitioned out of the bassinet in the pack-and-play. He knows it’s his room.
After dinner, though, it was time to bite the bullet. Delaying the move any further really didn’t serve a positive purpose, and we were looking forward to getting the baby into the nursery and bettering our chances of getting a full night’s sleep consistently. The wife took the Monster upstairs to get his help in bringing things from the nursery to the new bedroom… and then I came up to help with physically moving the bed.
“[Monster],” said I, when I came into the room with the bed, “who’s room is this?”
“MY ROOM!” he announced, spinning around in the middle of the open space (after we’d gotten him out of the way of the bed so we could put it down). And then he stopped spinning, looking at both of us. “G’bye, Mommy! G’bye Abba!”
“Good bye?” asked my wife.
“G’bye!” insisted the Monster, as he ushered us towards the door… and then closed it behind us, and could be heard hopping onto his bed.
Yeah… I think we’re looking at real problems here with the abrupt move into his ‘big boy’ bedroom. What do you think?
(Course, this morning, we also had to deal with the fact that he’s now decided he wants to jump up and down on his bed… but that’s for another post if we can’t break him of it…)