GL loves to go to the library and check out DVDs. He asks to go every day. Since it's only two blocks away, I usually take him. I don't trust him to cross the street by himself. I also don't trust him in the library by himself. Of course, he checks out his favorite movies over and over, but his favorite parts are the commercials and the bonus features. He'll frequently tell us about this or that movie that's "Coming too soon on video and DDD!"
The library was closed Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, and Sunday. As jillsmo says, Yeah. Good Times.
Meltdowns every day. Mama Bear had Christmas Eve off. In exchange, she had to work Christmas Day. I don't remember much about what we did during each day, but it revolved around trying to calm GL. You know how some Catholics / Lutherans / Baptists / whatever only attend church on Easter Sunday and Christmas Eve? Since GL's diagnosis, I've become sort of a reverse Catholic. Those are the two times I don't go. He doesn't handle crowds well, and I'm not too keen on them, myself. Brother Bear had asked if he could be in the Christmas program this year, so Mama Bear agreed to take him.
We went to church as a family Christmas Day. Although it's one of the holiest days of the church year, our church and many others don't hold services on Christmas Day. Some get around it by having midnight Mass, so it's technically Christmas Day by the time it's over. But ours has it's Christmas Eve service at 5:00 p.m. so everyone can get their kids to bed on time. So one day a year, we are Lutheran. Actually, I was confirmed Lutheran a few years back, when I had to work every Sunday and they were the only church in town that had a service at a time I could attend. The pastor still recognized me when we walked in the door, remembered my name, where we live, and what kind of car we drive. It's a small town.
Mama Bear went to work that afternoon, and the rest of the day was quiet. Well, as quiet as it ever gets around here. I had a project I wanted to work on in the basement, but every time I went downstairs, the boys would fight. I don't remember why I couldn't bring BB down with me, but the basement is where we keep everything that GL might hurt or that might hurt him. We keep the door locked, because we don't trust him in the basement.
We had planned to go to church Sunday, but MB had worked an overnight, and was too tired, and I didn't feel up to taking GL to church by myself. So the boys continued to fight, and MB tried to sleep. We had a family gathering Sunday afternoon because that was the compromise worked out with the various in-laws and out-laws. We gave GL his extra med and headed to my parents' house. When we arrived, he immediately began yelling at Nana that he wanted to watch PBS Kids on her computer. Her computer was down. He started banging on the windows, saying he was going to break them. She took him for a walk outside, and he calmed down a bit. Whenever he started getting worked up, someone would take him for a walk, and he'd calm down for a while. We managed to visit for about two hours, including dinner. By then, he was yelling, pounding on windows, and trying to hit people, and there was no calming him. He needed to go home, but he didn't want to leave. He wouldn't go out to the car, he wouldn't put on his shoes, and he wouldn't let me put them on. I thought my brother, the firefighter, would have to carry him out, but at the last minute, he decided to walk out to the car in his sock feet. He raged all the way home, and didn't calm down until bedtime. He's been getting up between two and six most mornings lately, and waking people up for company. He was up at three a.m. one morning last week. He turned on the lights and started yelling at his brother to get up and play with him. This morning, he slept until 9:20. I let him.
Today we went to the library for DVDs. GL followed his usual routine. As he walked in the door, he shouted, "Hey, librarian, do I have anything in? You check, and I'll be in the DVD section, looking for DVDs!" He dropped his DVDs on the counter, and ran back to the kids' DVDs. As we were checking out, I commented that we survived three days without the library. The librarian smiled. She knows we're doing the best that we can. But she couldn't resist adding, "I had three days without the library, and I liked it just fine!"
GL answered, loudly as always, "On Christmas, I yelled at my grandmother, and I had to go home."
I hate holidays. They bring out the worst in people, especially GL, because they disrupt his routine. We have worked very hard to make our celebrations low-key, but they are still often more than he can handle. It's fine if other people want to take the day off, but why do we have to?
Labels: and nothing but the truth, autism, Bah Humbug, Brother Bear, Christmas, church, DVD, Humor, Mama Bear, meltdowns, rest, Something to Offend Everyone, Was Your Day This Bad?, weather report