3.11.2013

The folly of assumptions

If I were to be completely honest, I'd say one of my faults is having some strong preconceived notions. In other words, I do a whole lotta assuming. Sometimes (often, I say) I am right, but when I am wrong, I really am wrong. I was reminded of the truth of the saying "assume makes .... " (fill in the blanks), last week at our family vacation at Great Wolf Lodge.

As I mentioned in my last post, the vacation was a belated celebration of Sophie's older sister's 7th birthday. The get-away was mainly planned as a treat for our two older children. Their life was about the babies and about autism for too long. And while they were having a blast I assumed that we would have to keep Sophie busy with snacks and maybe even take turns sitting in the hotel room with her. I assumed Sophie would not find the park too entertaining. After all, she doesn't even like water.

Well...

Hmmmm.....
Okay....
Really?
Wait a minute...
(Speechless)

Sophie blew us all out of the water, so to speak. She ran for the pool before she was even changed, had to be caught, wrestled into a swimsuit while squirming impatiently, and then was happy as a clam until it was time to get out. Then wasn't so happy :)

She did it all - wading pool, wave pool, lazy river, splash works, hot tub... We found that she still has the infantile swimming instincts and naturally relaxed in the water and did a sort of a doggie paddle. It seems like learning to swim is a very realistic goal for her.

Of course, I relentlessly kept on assuming. I assumed she would find the kiddie arcade too loud and chaotic (I sure did). Well, she loved it. She ran around the perimeter exuding pure joy, delighting in the twirling lights and disjointed beeps and jingles of the video games. While she seemed completely oblivious to her surroundings, all of a sudden she made a very deliberate bee-line for the carousel and insisted on being hoisted up onto the pony. Yes, yes I assumed she wouldn't like it. But I put her up and she grasped onto the golden pole and enjoyed every second of that 3-token ride with her sister by her side.

We had a wonderful vacation. We recharged, reconnected and tried something new (I even tried the tube slides for the first time ever in my 32 years with my big boy).

And I think I will remove "assume" and "can't" from my vocabulary, when talking about Sophie at least.

Funny pic- can you say "family of introverts"? Relaxing in our room in the evening.

 

8 comments:

  1. WONDERFUL to hear! Janey also loves the water and is completely at ease in it. I can picture exactly Sophie running around the outside of the arcade excitedly and then going right to the pony! I loved the picture of everyone reading. This all makes me think how Janey also doesn't mind changes of routine. I think a lot of kids with autism would be completely freaked out by going to a new place like that, but Janey would not be---the car ride wouldn't be good, but once we were there, I think it would be fine. I wonder if that's another girl/boy autism difference? Anyway, I am THRILLED you all had such a good time!

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    1. Yes, Sophie was always easy to take along places, probably easier than her normally developing peers. It was always in my head "autistic kids don't like change" but it's not really true in her case. It's a good thing.

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  2. What great pictures. She is so sweet. I love the sentiment and the story.

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  3. Hi, I've never commented before but this post really resonated with me.
    My daughter frequently surprises me in the same way, and that's when I realize that I've got to at least try things with her instead of assuming that it will end in disaster. My girl is very much aware of the route home when I pick her up from school, so if I go a different way I can see she's literally in tears with anxiety rising in her voice, saying "turn around, go back!" but then when I drive to her favorite cupcake place she perks right up! I think (or hope) it teaches her in some way that change in routine can be good and exciting.

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  4. Its so true. Sophie has taught me over and over that initial rejection does not necessarily mean she doesn't want to try something again. I think she balks at the "newness" but when slightly pushed is actually quite excited! Sophie memorizes routes too I think. She can't say but It seems that way. Thanks for reading and commenting! I love comments :)

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  5. OMG that is fantastic
    how well she is doing
    She is also sooooo adorable
    We learned the exact same thing about "newness" that you talk about in your comment above

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    Replies
    1. I find that we are still learning and separating the autism myths from the realities. She teaches me so much (it is an often heard cliche, but i do feel that way). Thanks for reading!

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