The summer season...
A time of growth when the days are longest and the nights are shortest. For Noah he has spent many of those long days worrying about the changes he will experience by attending a new high school this fall. The nights extra short as he's up before the sun because for him change is synonymous with impending doom.
Summer is also the time when kids seem to grow the most both physically and emotionally. With only two more days til the start of a new school year, I have begun examining the ways in which Noah has grown this summer:
* he held a part time job
* he can independently walk to and from the park near our home
* he has a "long-distance" girlfriend he face times every day
However, some things do not change.
..Noah's desire for sameness. Keeping the status quo in a world of never-ending change, is near impossible and stressful. I try to control "unexpected" things by serving him foods he is comfortable with and can tolerate. Keeping up with routines and schedules -- even in the summer months.
...Noah's short term memory difficulties. I make him lists, but he refuses to use them. I try not to lose my patience when he forgets and brushes his teeth without paste or can't remember which trash can is for waste and which is for recycling or has misplaced xyz...again and again.
...Noah's love for repetition and imitation. He is not only good at learning piano pieces by ear, he is also pretty terrific and imitating inflections/mannerisms and phrases from people he has met or movies he has seen...so much so it sometimes feels as though there are other people living in our home.
...our need for support from Action for Autism St. Louis. This summer through AFA Noah received private occupational therapy twice a week. On Tuesdays he and his beloved therapist, Cindy, worked on sensory issues and keyboarding skills. On Thursdays the two of them walked to our local city center to work out or played Foosball. She helped him devise a simple exercise plan that included using the treadmill and other equipment. They walked to a local eatery to order, count out money and pay for an item on his own. Through it all she has been his sounding board and counselor and helped him work through frustrations about being picked on at the pool this summer or worries about attending a new school.
On August 24th our family will be participating in our 11th annual AFA Family Fun Walk. If you feel led, please make a tax deductible donation here. Scroll to the bottom of the page and select Family Fun Walk from the drop down list and type Felgenhauer in the Donation Notes bar.
Thank you to all who have supported us in the past and those who are able to help this year.