The sun sets on another school week.
The school week almost ended prematurely this morning. To a child with Aspergers routine is the key. Outside the house at precisely 805am. Recheck the school bag contents. Go through the class timetable for the day. Reconfirm the after school plan. At 810am start listening for the bus to arrive. As soon as the bus is heard move towards the gate. As the bus passes confirm with our son where he plans to sit. As the bus does a u-turn son sets off for the bus stop.
This routine works well … most days.
Today as we left the house at 8.05. On plan. Bus is already at the bus stop. Oh s**t.
Suddenly we have a meltdown. The plan is out of the window. Poor kid doesn’t know what to do. After a couple of minutes he is frozen to the spot, in tears and unable to think. All I could think about was to reach for a scrap piece of paper in my pocket.
“Son this is Plan X, it’s our plan for this”
He looks at me and asks what does the plan say. Not sure son if I’m honest the scrap paper is my shopping list for the week.
“It says we start walking to the gate while I quickly check you bag and read out your class timetable. At the gate you tell me where you are going to sit. Then you walk calmly to the bus singing your favourite song”
We head towards the gate suddenly we are on plan or to be accurate on the shopping list. Suddenly he stops and he asks what does the plan say about what happens if the bus sets off before he gets to the bus stop.
“Dad sits cross legged in the middle of the road and refuses to move. Thus stopping said bus.”
He smiles and says “you made that last bit up didn’t you.”
As the bus passes, he waves from the window and laughs. Silly Dad is sat crossed legged in the snow.
Maybe we need to think about our routines and schedules. Map out some of the things which might go wrong and plan some alternative plans. Not having to rely on a shopping list again would be nice. But at least we have Plan X now.