Let me tell you about a car journey that sticks in my mind.
This particular day, one of my best friends left their son aged 5 with me. This was my 1st real encounter with Aspergers before I realised Autism would be apart of my life forever. Proud of myself for leaving the house with, not only a baby but an extra child in tow, I load Aiden into the car which was parked on the drive, in front of the garage. The 5 year old follows me out and stands by the side of me next to the car. ‘Go round the other side’ I say, assuming he’d go round to the other door and get in the car. I continue to fix the seatbelt ensuring the strap is securely around the car seat. A few moments later, I here, ‘help!’ I look up to find my friends little boy completely wedged between the front of the car and the garage door! ‘What are you doing there?’ I say. You said, ‘go round the other side, so I did but I don’t fit through here!’ He was going all the way round the other side of the car to come back and stand on the other side of me! Literal thinking at its best! Learning how to say what you mean is a real skill but something I had to quickly become proficient in. Quietly chuckling to myself, I help him out, load him up and begin our journey to Asda. (Which for the record, was a 10 minute car trip).
The car motion would send Aiden to sleep – halaluya! Sadly though, if I stopped at traffic lights, in traffic, or when we’d reached our destination, he woke up. The perfect baby that I’d planned, was far from perfect! He had the loudest scream ever, so much so, that they called the doctors in when he was born, as they’d never heard anything like it! It was ear piercing! He, however, clearly liked the sound of his own voice because he never stopped screaming. I would do anything to lengthen those brief moments of science in the car when he slept. I began planning the route in my head even before I’d left the house, in order to avoid any traffic and I’d deliberately take a longer route just to avoid the traffic lights! What should have been a nip to Asda became a grand tour around the town and was a whole day event! I thought I was going crazy, a newborn baby was indirectly dictating and taking over my life how does that happen?