All week long I’ve been dangling the carrot in front of him, urging the Roc to keep going.
“You have to go to school today because in 4 days…”
Then it was, “in two days…”
Finally today I was able to say, “because tomorrow we are going to ARIZONA!!!!”
Where we will be doing lots and lots of uphill hiking under the blue sky and sparkling sun.
I am excited, and of course a little nervous. The Roc has traveled by air since he was an infant, averaging about 2 flights every year. He remembers what check in looks like, that we have to wait in line at security and take off our shoes, that we have to wait to get on the airplane, and then fly. He remembers the order and we have a little picture schedule that we use to help with each step. Even though he remembers all of it, that doesn’t make it easy. He is still anxious about the crowds, the noise, the people, the movement, the general chaotic feel of the airport. He has a hard time waiting in the long security line, as well as waiting to get on the plane, and don’t forget about the scary airport bathrooms. He has already told me that he doesn’t want it “to take a long time to get there…” Of which I can do nothing about. I’ve packed snacks, markers and paper, a few little toys, and our portable DVD player. I even got a few new movies for him…about waterfalls, which I am saving as a surprise! I hope he likes them and will sit in relative silence and watch during our 2 separate plane rides tomorrow, first to Texas, and then on to Arizona. I bought a t-shirt that says “I love someone with Autism” on it in case anyone needs an explanation of the strange faces, noises, and hand obsession that all emerge when the Roc is under sensory duress and anxiety, though I don’t know if anyone will actually notice (the t-shirt, lots of people will notice the strange faces, noises and hand obsession.)
I’m trying not to be anxious myself and focus on the fact that this time tomorrow the Roc and I will be in Arizona with my parents, under the blue sky and sparkling sun.