A Lesson Learned

We are incredibly blessed, lucky and super grateful that Joey is an awesome sleeper (unlike many kids with autism) and will not take that for granted. 

I realize this 100%. 

We are also incredibly lucky that over the last six months, the mind-blowing, soul-crushing, all day meltdowns that we experienced last year for approximately 10 months straight, have decreased significantly in frequency as well as intensity.

That’s actually putting it mildly. They were so bad for so long, that we have been holding our breath for the last six months, afraid to actually enjoy a “normal” life again. Afraid to jinx it. Afraid to go back to the dark place we were in last year. 

But we also remind ourselves to try to be in the moment and enjoy it…while it’s happening. Enjoy the giggles, the playfulness, the increase in communication. Enjoy having our sweet boy back again. Because it is has been truly awesome to have only one or two minor meltdowns a day. 

This month, my parents have traveled to Virginia to be with my sister and her family as they welcomed my newest nephew, Jack, into the world.

For the last 8 years, my parents have cared for my 92 year old grandfather in their home, making it challenging to go very many places together. But they are amazing and always go above and beyond, so they’ll be there for a month.

In their absence, I am staying at their house to take care of Poppa for 4 weeks. 

Our hope was for my whole family to stay with me. Normally, this would not be an issue. But for Joey, this is no easy task.
We have worked tirelessly for the last week and a half to transition him to living with us at my parents’ house while they are gone, so that we can all be together. We baby-proofed a whole bedroom here, had his ABA therapist help transition him during the day, and brought all of his favorite toys and things to make him comfortable. 

However, after many failed attempts at transitioning, many night-wakings, many bad moods and head-banging meltdowns, we are throwing in the towel. 

We want him to be comfortable at my parents’ house. 

But acceptance of our reality is the key to our happiness…and autism (and the subsequent meltdowns that Joey has struggled with) has taught us that we cannot fit a square peg into a round hole. 

He’s happy and content at home. He sleeps all night at home. He melts down less at home. And we realize how incredibly lucky we are that we have that. 

So we have a new plan. Now we split up for the next 2 1/2 weeks and divide and conquer. Caleigh and I will stay with Poppa and Joe and Joey will stay at home.

It’s not ideal. 

Things could always be easier. But you know what? It could always be tougher, too. 

We are lucky that he loves our home and it makes him so happy to be there. And his happiness is all that matters. 


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