6 weeks in - How's he doing?
I had predicted that routine would be an issue......
Luke’s day is planned to the minute. Obsessed with exercise and healthy eating, everything is detailed in a book - which type of workout today, diet, high protein snacks, yoga, how many hours sleep and the all important monthly sports massage. Much preparation was put in by Gary (like most young people, he doesn’t listen to Mum), saying that his routine would be different, and that he’d have to adjust. A big ask for someone with autism.
It’s fair to say that adjustment was fairly tough. He wobbled, got angry, predicted major life threatening catastrophes, and at one point said ‘this isn’t going to work’. However, working as a team, me and Gary shared the endless phone calls, the staff adjusted their support times as best as they could, his work placement staff provided routine and a friendly face (and reported in regularly), and slowly the new routine formed.
A new mixed martial arts class went well and is just across the road, he mastered the new walk to work, familiarised himself with a new supermarket, planned his cleaning and did his first few loads of washing. Then to top it all, he found a new sports masseur who was patient, and again is a short walk away. That was the final success that nailed it. Even slicing his hand on a tuna tin was dealt with…….although I thought he’d lost at least an arm when he called!!!
It’s a huge change, so by definition is never going to be easy for someone with autism. Hearing and seeing him scared and confused was really, really hard. We knew however that it would get better and it did. There will still be blips, and still be frantic phone calls, but we know that there will be ways to work things out. Most importantly he now understands that too, so he is likely to be less worried next time.
It’s so quiet at home though………