So- It’s been a busy time around Monkey’s Manor. His behavior has tremendously improved, in that he isn’t aggressive or angry nearly as much as he has been the past year and a half. There is a lot of speculation as to why from my perspective. That’s because a couple major changes have taken place, which have altered his life in significant ways. Due to the nature of these changes, it’s hard not to imply causation where it may not belong. That’s a road I try to avoid as a means to keep my shoes to life– ya know– clean and spiffy.
Basically, mom is out of the picture for Monkey at this point. Long story short, this means that he is now in one home all week. This alone has provide much needed consistency for my son.
So- It’s my game now. So far, my home is pulling it off pretty well, with new and exciting changes every day.
I mean, YES, I’m a little worried about how I can find a schedule that supports a home with an autistic child. A child that has breaks from school, each and every month. Ironically, that’s due to the “balanced school year.
YES, it sucks that mom is virtually out of his life- for many reasons.
YES, I am about at my wits end with filling in the blank to the question: “How the hell I am supposed to _(life)__?”
However- it’s not all doom and gloom. Sure, life is still kicking me before I can get back up, but my baby boy- well, he is leveling out. That leads me to the second major change that has come after the storm of Monkey turning teenager on me; he is communicating. His little Leap Frog Scribble and Write has needed battery changes 2x since my last post. At no fault to Leap Frog’s design. Monkey, simply doesn’t quit spelling to us.
His vocabulary is growing more and more each day, and he is beginning to link together multiple words with real meaning. That’s the big key! It was awesome enough that he was typing out words, and making jokes with us a few weeks ago. However, now- he is flat out communicating for wants, and even asking questions!!
Yep! My buddy who has shown ZERO signs of developing communication skills for 14 years!!! – has finally asked me if he it was bed time, and I couldn’t have smiled bigger! Never mind the fact that he still got up, over and over, at bedtime. He was still asking a real question, that was pertinent to the moment. Taunting me with the idea that he cared about my opinion, that HE asked me for, only makes him a normal teenager. For his brother and I, the impossible has become our reality. As a result it’s been a surge of smiles, laughs, and absolute enjoyment at every turn around our home.
My eyes well up just typing it out. It’s simply too much to believe that my little Monker Dunker is actually looking at me with that big smile, waiting to see if I got his joke. That’s the stuff that makes you believe heaven and earth are one in the same.
So, how does all of this lead me to Christmas songs, and jingle bells in the title of this blog?
Well, his sharper mind, and increased focus on the people around him, has only improved his ninja skills. The little stinker is somehow becoming more cunning when it comes to trying to escape. This is because he’s even better at sizing up the local security measures that I’ve put in place. It’s a very sincere fear of mine that is building day by day. In that, I need to keep him safe, yet he has outgrown all of the little “life hacks” that I have used all these years. Monkey can simply reach more things, and move heavier objects. As a result, I have had to step up my game on keeping between him and the exits ever where we go. However, when we go somewhere, I can’t lock down the whole village to keep my son safe. I need something portable, and highly noticeable.
And that’s where the bells come in to play.
See, he keeps trying to bolt on me, and he is almost 15- and I’m almost 40. He’s gonna win if I don’t have a strategy, and therefore- bells.
This idea came to me because I was teasing that Monkey is always treating us like his cattle, by inadvertently herding us around the house to keep up with him. And in a moment of strength– I lifted my head to the clouds, raised my hoof to the sky, and said- “NO MORE!” It is Monkey who shall wear the bells, for the cows necks have grown tired!! Then, no one thought my joke was funny, and I ordered the bells you see above because they were the best option that I could find to strap on his belt loop.
He is beginning to look like a slumlord though. Between the bells, and the ID/Luggage tags that I keep on him, he looks like a pretty busy guy 🙂
I tie the bells to his belt and/or belt loop, and he is like a little reindeer, prancing in the woods. Making noise everywhere he goes. As a tool to stop Monkey from escaping, these bells are the way to go. You don’t grow “used” to bells prancing by you, and it makes him stick out to everyone within earshot. Which only helps to keep him safe.
To be clear, the bells are used for when we leave the home for a cookout, or to the store, etc. Around the house, I stick with staying between him and the doors. I don’t think I could handle bells all day around the house. Just so no one thinks I’m living in some weird Kubrick film based in the North Pole. That would be simply maddening. Outside! That’s when I am suggesting you use the bells, because they really do stand out, no matter how long you hear them.
In conclusion, both of my son’s seem better off with Monkey being home with me full time. All I have to do now is figure out remote employment, ABA therapy insurance issues, keeping Monkey from eating everything in the house, and then enjoy myself 🙂 Because despite the growing storm of things going wrong, my baby boy- well, he is showing us more and more of who he is each day, and we can’t get enough!
Good luck to all who are reading this, and thanks for your time and support. Every view- Every share- and every like, truly does go to supporting a child with autism. Each and every day. So, help us out, and spread the love if you like what you find on this site.