Coordination

Beauty in the sky masked evil intentions. Twenty seconds later a successful bombing run covered my car bonnet. Not so beautiful. The one hand giveth; the other hand taketh away.

Basically I have knackered my body up. Medical advice was to rest the right side for a couple of months. No running. If you play football in the garden – don’t use your right foot to kick. That’s a bit of a problem. During my sporting career the left leg has been a bit of a spectator. It is used for standing on and just getting in the way. Nothing else. So since a toddler I have been completely right footed.

So this garden football season was approached with trepidation. The first attempts confirmed the fears. Absolutely useless. Even the frequent cow audience clearly most unimpressed with my attempted kicks.

But a couple of months later and….

With one hand giveth.

The left leg is like a magicians wand. Better than the right foot ever was. Complete ball control, pinpoint passes, power, curling shots into the top corner of our small net. It just shows that with practice what you can achieve.

But with the other hand taketh.

Now the right side is a little less painful I’ve started using it again and just maybe I could be a natural two footed footballer. Guess what. The right foot is now completely useless. Can’t use it. All my hard work has basically switched me from being completely right footed to completely left footed.

Maybe my brain can only cope with one usable leg.

Son struggles to tie shoe laces. He also can’t use a knife and fork at the same time. He just can’t coordinate two limbs simultaneously. It’s a bit like riding a bike. Son can peddle but not at the same time as steering or braking. If he turns a corner he can’t peddle. He did manage to learn to swim but it doesn’t come naturally. It’s either using his legs or using his arms – not both at the same time.

He has been diagnosed with Dyspraxia which often goes hand in hand with Autism. The bottom line is coordination does not come naturally. We have been doing some exercises to work on this. Jumping on a trampoline and catching at the same time has been our single most fun exercise. We have seen some improvements for example he has developed good catching skills. But things like shoe laces are probably going to be life long issues. We realise this. The main reason we do coordination exercises is to help with his Dyslexia, other improvements are bonuses.

Maybe you just have to accept and work with how your body is setup uniquely for you. Make the best of it. We all can’t be brilliantly coordinated like birds. To fly, aim and poo at the same time. That’s beyond me.

Swiss Sunday with a hint of Bond.

It’s Swiss Sunday. It’s time to be shaken not stirred.

We start again from the stunning mountain village of Murren and we are heading up to the top of the Schilthorn. A world famous mountain standing at 9744ft.

Only two ways to the top. A series of Cable Car rides. Not for the faint hearted. Once it was the longest aerial cable car in the world.

The other way is to try the gruelling 5 hour trek up a narrow mountain dirt path.

The mountain was featured in the 1969 James Bond movie – On Her Majesty’s Secret Service. At the top you can visit the Bond Museum. It even has a cinema. The photo below is one of the mountains promo stills.

The Schilthorn has a wonderful revolving restaurant. It slowly turns and completes a full rotation in just under one hour. It’s a tremendous experience sat having lunch and gazing out of the window as the stunning mountain scenery moves slowly round.

There is a third way down but it’s not for me…

Suspect my butt would need a bigger chute.

Apparently you can see over 200 different summits from here. I remember son telling me

Close down the cable car and this would be the perfect place to live.

It really would be. A little chilly during winter but those views. You would never tire of them.

This has got to stop…

Where do we start with this loathsome piece of so called journalism from the Murdock stable of crap.

  • Aspergers does not make you deeply disturbed. What does make you deeply disturbed is being a small minded, abusive, bigoted numpty.
  • On what planet does being either being autistic or a teen somehow invalidate your opinion. Yet we are supposed to value the opinions of Andrew Bolt more as he is a ………
  • Why MUST we doubt an opinion which doesn’t fit in with your owners view of the world. A man clearly putting the world ahead of his own interest (ha ha).
  • Why shouldn’t world leaders listen to a range of opinion. Why does being young or autistic preclude you from that right.
  • Would Murdock be happy if Greta stopped caring about the planet and started making a quick buck instead. Profit is less dangerous than caring.

I have read the article and it gets worse. How can the editor or the owner allow this to be published. Worryingly it’s probably because they want this crap to be published. It fits in with their warped take on the world and the one they invest heavily in. I note that Trump and Johnson are quick to come to the defence of their rich corporate buddies yet not a word on this. No surprise there.

The issue here is not really about climate change. We have opinions on both sides. People have a right to make up their own mind. If you read this blog regularly you will know which side I sit on. What is the issue is that part of our media and our ruling classes think its acceptable to turn their corporate guns and fake news propaganda on good people for just caring.

The world is full is so much talent with individuals who really do care. You see what a great world we could live in. Yet you see the abuse Greta gets and you realise why we are in such a mess.

This has got to stop. We have to stand up to bullies. And for what it’s worth I have to stand up for a better world. A world where Aspergers is embraced. And a world where we make a stand for the generations to come. We have one planet it’s time to save it.

That’s how it is

Just seems such a waste. Such a beautiful flower and yet it’s in our garden so it only has an audience of two. But that’s how it is.

He is so caring. When his class had the last day in the old school one of the girls cried her eyes out. The only one to go across to her and ask if she was alright was our son. Yet because he is on the spectrum he must be unfeeling and cold…..

He brain is far more powerful than his Old Pops yet somehow I went university and he is seen as being low attainment.

He has a love for scientific enquiry yet that counts for nothing as he can’t accurately hand draw a plant cell structure or spell correctly common science words.

He can create awesome self contained worlds with detailed mythologies, politics and cultures. Yet because he can’t construct a grammatically correct postcard he is written off.

He can forensically debate historical details yet because people assume that he will never read a textbook he is not encouraged to foster that subject love.

The education system has written off his reading as something which won’t develop yet he can read and send texts without help. He is told to just get used to using a reading pen yet today while watching the Justice League he read the sub titles almost perfectly.

He is not part of the in-group of kids who live and breathe football. Yet he can talk for hours about football stats. Relive the sports greatest moments. Can talk for hours about the minutiae of Team setups and tactics.

He can be so relaxed, so astute and so naturally funny. Yet only I see this. It does seem such a waste. But that’s how it is.

Summer Rain

It’s SUMMERTIME. It’s YORKSHIRE. It’s still RAINING.

As a kid I remember being told if it was settled and fine on the 31st July then the rest of summer would be great. However if it was wet on that day then summer would stay poor. It’s funny how often we have great weather in July then we hit the 31st and the weather breaks. So basically here in Yorkshire at this time of year – once the weather breaks it stays broken. But it’s great conditions for ducks.

See it’s true the Brits are always taking about the weather…..

Today was supposed to be another attempt to visit a new place. A local castle. Unfortunately lots of rain stopped play. So we will try again tomorrow.

Dad if we go now then we will have the castle to ourselves. But it’s a ruin. So no cover. Going to get so wet. On balance I will take a risk on crowds. This is way beyond wet.

Yet one hour later.

Dad can we go out and play footie.

It’s pouring down.

When the aliens come to invade earth they ain’t going to say – it’s raining we will give it an hour.

So in the pouring rain we played football then it was aquatic trampolining. Drenched. That wet that you can feel your feet shrivelling up. That wet that the football becomes like a bar of soap and weighs as much as a set of dumbbells. That wet that the ducks bugger off inside.

Tomorrow the colds will start but today it’s fun.

Wise

Meet the Wise Old Elf. The undoubted star of Ben and Holly.

It was a show from our sons preschool days. It was never off the TV. That was probably more down to me than him. I could quite easily have spent my life watching this and In the Night Garden.

Now I’m not allowed to watch it that often. Although son finds a game of spotting which voice actors feature in both B&H and Peppa Pig. For example it’s the same voice for Peppa and Daisy.

Anyway as we took our mad dog for a walk we had to cross a field of cows. Our son was petrified of cows – not sure why. He would freeze if he entered a cow field. Dog walks had to avoid crossing them. But now we have managed to conquer that fear. When we see a cow it’s a race to be the first person to shout

Go on Wise Old Elf sit under the cow.

Years ago we watched an episode where it started to rain. The Wise Old Elf decided to seek shelter under a cow. And yes the cow sat on him. Someone almost wet himself watching that. It might not have been our son. Poor Elf. Same voice actor as Grandpa Pig from Peppa.

So thanks to a pompous accident prone cartoon Elf our son cured one of his fears. Sometimes solutions come in the most unexpected ways. That’s why it’s worth just persevering.

Son continues to struggle with his dyslexia. The difference is now the education system has dropped any pretence of trying to find ways to help improve his reading. They have just moved to the next stage – he can’t read, never will so lets lower expectations and any grades will be a bonus. Strange how the one person they have never asked about this is our son. He still wants to try so the fight continues. At home we continue to experiment with

  • Reading pens
  • Reading Apps
  • Shared reading
  • Coordination exercises

But that brings us to unexpected help. YouTube and Computer Games. They really do seem to help. Maybe it’s the visual nature. The themes. The combination of sensory experiences. Whatever the reason we have a kid who still struggles to read books yet he can navigate through games and the iPad without help. He can send texts without any help. Yes with some spelling issues but we all have them. That’s progress. Which makes the education stance so frustrating. We have to be realistic. Although he is improving the reading gap continues to grow with his peers. But that’s no reason to give up. The Wise Old Elf shows that.

The experts

We had an appointment today. Sat in the waiting room with three other families. All three with kids younger than our son. They were happily talking, running around and playing with the provided games. Son sat in the corner basically trying to hide behind a potted plant. This continued up to and during the appointment. Back in the car driving home he was back to smiling and talking about a multitude of subjects.

Since Aspergers became our byword this type of behaviour is common. I remember a Clinical Psychologist saying that it’s likely to be replicated throughout his life. Technically Aspergers is called a life long condition.

Son puts it so much better.

It’s just me. Its who I am.

Yet I had read a blog the other day which basically said Aspergers could be programmed out of people through repetition. It was an illness and as such could be eradicated. The cure…..

One of the subjects we talked about was. How does a Cow see itself. Not as a cow as that is our interpretation. It’s a great question to play with as we will never know the answer. As a result son couldn’t disprove my thesis that a cow sees itself as an actor in a Madagascar movie. Son informed me that about 63% of the worlds cattle population are from India, Brazil and China. He also allowed my random fact that the nosiest cows are from Switzerland – those beautiful cow bells.

Cows have 22000 genes with about 80% of them shared with humans.

I remember reading that cows like to stand either facing towards or away from the magnetic poles.

Apparently in Cow News – a cow walked through a classroom in India today.

Anyway after much deliberation son answered the cow question.

Should really ask a cow about that.

But that’s the secret. Too many humans make lots of assumptions and then answer questions they are not best qualified to answer. So when we talk about Aspergers maybe we should first ask the experts about it. Not the experts but the real EXPERTS. The kids and the adults with Aspergers.

Lonely

Two days ago it was 34C and cloudless. Today we are back to jumpers, rain and mist. Again the weather matches my mood.

Today I am missing my partner more than usual. Maybe it’s because we are starting to approach the fateful anniversary. Maybe it’s the weather. Maybe it’s 2 hours sleep last night. One thing it is most definitely not to do with is our son. As ever he is the shining light. The only thing that keeps me going.

So as he is watching ScoobyDoo and the Witch’s Ghost my mind is wandering. Not only am I missing her so much there is something else. I am still enjoying parenting today but I’m not enjoying being a single parent today. Does that make sense?

  • Nobody is there to tell you that are doing some parenting thing right or wrong.
  • Nobody is there to give you a hug.
  • Nobody is there to give you that knowing smile.
  • After son goes to bed nobody to snuggle up with to watch a movie.
  • Nobody is there to share a quiet moment with.
  • Nobody is there is ever to make you a cup of coffee.
  • Nobody to cover while you pop out for that bottle of milk or a bag of flour which you have just run out of.
  • Nobody to calm me down when I am about to throttle the hoover as the belt snaps again.
  • No more holding hands.
  • Nobody to share that special moment together when our son does something magical.

Don’t get me wrong parenting is still the most rewarding thing I will ever do. Maybe I need to write a post about the upside. It is the best gig in the world. Just somedays it’s a bit tougher than usual and certainly more lonely than I envisioned all those years ago.

Boris starts with a B

At the start of the year our son agreed to try and visit at least 12 new places this year. Today was going to be one of those trips. A visit to a beach and weather worn castle. We were all set. Picnic packed. We made it to the car.

Dad I am really not happy about this. I can feel my stomach churning. Can I go on the toilet.

An hour later we called off the expedition. That’s the thing about Autism. You can’t make definite plans and stick to them. You need to be flexible. Bend with the wind. Sometimes you do turn up at an event or arrive at a destination. But you never relax. Never feel completely at ease. You see the other parents happily enjoying a drink or a chat seemingly oblivious to their children. That’s not our life. You feel apart from the others. Constantly circling the area looking for the first sign of problems. Always on edge waiting for something to happen. Car keys at the ready for that early escape.

Somedays you don’t even get out of the house or car.

After it happens son can be a bit down. Thinks he’s let me down. Trust me it’s his Dad who feels like he has let his son down.

So again we need cheering up. We need a distraction.

So we have a new game all thanks to our glorious new leader Barking Boris. This ones quick to play. Let’s see who many B words we can put in front of Boris.

Britain’s Boris

Brilliant Boris

Brainy Boris

Brexit Boris

Or

Bonkers Boris

Bluffer Boris

Buffoon Boris

Bulbasaur Boris

Bigoted Boris

Babblative Boris

Bogus Boris

Bafflegab Boris

Beetlejuice Boris

Bauble-bearer Boris

Bum Boris

Buck Boris

Bankroll Boris

Bankrupt Boris

Barbie Boris

Blockhead Boris

Bellend Boris

Birdbrain Boris

Barney Boris

Bozo Boris

Bulls****er Boris

Silly Billy Boris

Beetroot Head Boris

Blackadder Boris

Blundering Boris

Bampot Boris

Bumblehead Boris

Bananas in Pyjamas Boris

Yes it worked. A couple of hours later we were playing football in the garden. When I say playing football it’s more retrieving the ball from next doors garden. Not quite a beach or castle. But it’s fun. It’s an Aspergers life. It’s our life.

Promise it will be a Boris Free zone for a while after this.

Not a clue

I’m still trying to get my head round the fact that me wearing a In The Night Garden T-shirt is not a sign of me absolutely reeking of awesomeness. Apparently it just makes me sad.

Clearly I have missed the last 20 years of cultural development and I am fossilised, moldy and a dinosaur. As you can tell this post is about how dated I have become. The most obvious sign is how our son is talking a different language to me.

When I was young (about 3500 years ago) if you liked something you shouted ace. Apparently not anymore. I should in fact be shouting yeet. I ramped up my uncoolness as for a couple of days I misheard him and started shouting yeast.

A few months back son started referring to the worlds best footballer, Messi, as GOAT. I naturally thought that was to do with his beard or worryingly maybe something to do with satanism. Thankfully I finally discovered it was Greatest Of All Time.

Then I was shopping with our son and I kept hearing kids talking about buying new Rides. Trying to be with it I asked our son why so many kids wanted a new bike. The look I got. Apparently they wanted new sneakers.

Or maybe it was the time son was getting ready for school and I asked if he was sure that he didn’t need his sports kit.

Hundo P

I assumed he was referring to some new Manga character. Again I didn’t have a clue. Apparently it means 100% sure.

Today in my customary daily humiliation which is playing our son at FIFA 19 I was called a Newb. Harsh but my team had just been beaten 14-1. I am also a newb at Fortnite, Minecraft, WWE2K, Xenoverse 2 and Rainbow Six. Why is it that the only games I ever got good at have disappeared without a trace. I was the John Cena of the Donkey Kong world. The Yoda like playing beast in the BBC computer space game Elite. And don’t even mention my brilliance in Galaxian. But today that counts for nothing. Time moves on.

As I was putting the finishing touches to this rubbish a new blog notice popped up from Autism in Our Nest. Spookily Robyn had just blogged on a similar theme. Again she deals with this with far more insight than my sledgehammer approach will ever do. However it is reassuring that I’m not the only one out of step with modern culture.