Little Man’s class is going on a field trip tomorrow to the Science Museum. I am not going with him. This is making for all kinds of emails and texts flying around between his SAI, classroom teacher, and myself. You’d think we were preparing for something much bigger than a simple field trip. Only we know that with ASD kids, nothing “simple” is simple.
He LOVES the science museum. There’s lots of hands-on stuff, and the subject matter in the entire place is right up his alley. We even went there for his birthday last year, at his particular request. I let his teacher and the SAI know that part wouldn’t be a problem.
Here’s the deal though – he hates the freakin bus. It’s usually pretty loud, and there’s generally a good amount of chaos. I get it – the kids are excited to be getting off campus, going somewhere interesting, doing something that isn’t part of the normal routine. He will normally do pretty well on the way there, but we’ve experienced meltdown more often than not on the trip home.
I also asked his teacher to review the agenda for the day with him, and give him a written schedule. It really helps lower his anxiety to know what’s going to happen when. The only backlash being he will expect everything to happen exactly when the schedule says it will happen. You and I know it doesn’t always work that way. So I asked her to remind him it’s not set in stone.
He will be taking his headphones and snacks. They’re worried how he will do in the IMAX theater. He’s been in IMAX four or five times. It’s not usually a problem. I’m truly hoping that will be the case tomorrow.
You might ask why I’m not going with him. I could be going, but I chose not to. I have three events to prep for, and I kind of need him to get used to doing these things without me there as his crutch. I’ve written before about his co-dependence. I discussed with his SAI at the beginning of the year I would be begging off of most things for this very reason. She understood. It’s another form of therapy for him to have to get through field trips without me there.
I’m a bit anxious about this. But I’m holding that in. I don’t need him to know I have any concerns at all over how he’ll do. If he recognizes I’m anxious, that won’t help his anxiety levels one bit. We’ll both take a deep breath and hold on tight. Fingers crossed and prayers going up he flies like we know he can.