We’re fortunate that we’ve not had a problem to date of the Monster deciding to run away from us anywhere.  He’s certainly had minor elopement incidents – one particular trip to Sesame Place comes to mind – but by and large, we’ve been very lucky.  Between a couple of factors, that the Monster’s a compliant child and that we’ve gone through behavioral therapy to work on awareness that he needs to stick with us, we’ve been a little more relaxed about the whole thing.

(It also helps that he has his necklace, and doesn’t fight us about wearing it, which is a second layer of help in public.)

But that all said, we’re lucky that we’ve not had to worry really about elopement.  I hear all the horrible stories, and my wife makes a point of bringing them up when they appear on Facebook or the like.  But…

The fact is, Monster’s a homebody. Continue reading

Review – If I Need Help

ifineedhelpA few weeks ago, the Monster wandered off from us at Sesame Place when the park was extremely crowded.

The nature of the Monster’s Autism is that he’s limited in his ability to communicate with others.  If prompted, he can tell you his name (first and last, but you often need to prompt him along), but he doesn’t know our phone numbers, our names, his home address… or at the very least, he doesn’t know how to share them with others.

We were very lucky, that afternoon, that park security found him and took him to Lost Parents, and that he was sufficiently communicative when I got there that he positively identified me as his father, but… in a larger amusement park, anyone could have found him, and we could have been running all over.  And out in the wider world, if he were wandering in our neighborhood? Continue reading

Parking Lot Safety

On Thursdays, I pick the Monster up from school and take him to gymnastics.

In each case, this means navigating busy parking lots on foot.  The school’s lot is nothing short of chaos, with parents in their personal cars and the larger busses steaming in and out of the lot and trying to navigate around in aisles that really aren’t large enough for the traffic that comes through.  (Not to mention that folks can’t seem to be bothered to pay much attention to the painted arrows.)  The lot over at Rebounders is a little less chaotic, but is a fairly confined space due again to the plot of land and its alignment next to two busy streets. Continue reading

Baby, It’s Cold Outside

Between last week and this week, we’ve been caught in something that feels a little bit like The Day After Tomorrow, even if it’s hardly living up to that kind of cinematic hype.

Despite the snow, the Monster didn’t get a chance really to go play in it.  On Friday, it was entirely too cold for the kids to get out into it – it was bone-chillingly cold, and they don’t really tend to like to be too bundled up… or at least to wear gloves. Continue reading

Stranger Danger

Every other Sunday, the Monster goes to his program at the JCC for the afternoon.  He gets to be supervised and do all kinds of social play, and an hour of swimming to boot at the end.

What always amuses me, though, is how he reacts when he comes out to meet me afterwards.  Without fail, he tends to appear, and without a word to his counselor or to me, lets go of his counselor’s hand and comes over to take mine (even if it’s not offered yet) and quietly stands next to me until I do something about it. Continue reading

To Track or Not

Last night, the wife and I were sitting around after the kids went to bed, checking out the news while playing around on Facebook.  (Though, when did this become a thing, a married couple sitting in the same room, both perusing their own Facebook accounts on separate laptops?)  Due to the groups that we’re in on Facebook and elsewhere, we were reading quite a bit about the search for Avonte Oquendo.

And that brought us back to the incident two weeks ago in our own lives. Continue reading

Security Matters

As frequent readers here can tell you, getting my attention – my full attention – is a Bad Thing.

My wife and I are a team when it comes to the Monster and his various appointments, therapies, and whathaveyou.  She’s the one that most folks deal with – she’s friendly, and nice, and inclined to want people to like her.  Me, the warrior dad… I’m the one that things come to when there’s a Problem.

We have a Problem. Continue reading