Today I worked from home because I wasn’t feeling well. I called my parents and told them not to worry coming over. I’d be home to receive the monkey when the bus dropped him off after school.
In the afternoon, as the bus arrives, I went out to greet my son. The bus driver said the monkey didn’t want to get off the bus. He was doing fine until he saw me.
He didn’t understand why his grandparents were not there. He didn’t understand why his routine was off. He didn’t know how to handle this change.
He started fighting the bus monitor as she was trying to take his sealt belt off. I told her don’t worry. I’d take over, I didn’t want her to get hurt.
But by then he’s in full meltdown mode. He’s hitting, scratching, kicking. He’s doing everything possible to not let me unbuckle him. He’s pulling off my blouse and trying to throw my glasses off. He’s too strong. I just couldn’t handle him.
After a while the bus driver, Mr R, asked to assist. He said the monkey wouldn’t hurt him. He was able to unbuckle him. And between all three of us, we are able to drag the monkey off the bus.
During all of this Mr. R was trying so hard to calmn the monkey. He kept telling him that it’s okay. He kept telling him that he was going to be able to swim inside the house. He kept telling him that his mom loved him. And this part just fills my heart. They say it takes a village to raise a child. And this is proof. Because just as my son’s teacher and therapists are important, so is everyone else in his life. Mr. R is the first and last person my son sees on his way to and from school. Mr. R has a huge responsibility in keeping my son safe, in transporting my son on a daily basis. And many times Mr. R has to step in and calmn my son, even if my son is unreachable. And this is the beauty of my village, our team. ❤️
But by then the monkey was gone. Full meltdown mode. He was unreachable. All he wanted was to get back on the bus and he was going to do anything possible to get there.
We finally got him to the entrance of the house. I told Mr. R that I was okay. I got it from here. I knew he had to go back inside the bus. By then my daughter came out. She didn’t know that all of this was happening. And between the two of us, we dragged the monkey inside.
And it got worse. He was trying to hit us and kick us. He was so upset we couldn’t calmn him down. We were finally able to hold him down in a way that he wouldn’t hurt himself nor us. My daughter was holding his feet while I was on top of him holding his arms.
My daughter went to get a blanket and we were able to wrap it and hold him down better. This way his arms were tied down and he couldn’t hurt us. She could focus on his head, keep it straight so that he couldn’t reach to bite us.
And this is autism.
It’s rough and ugly. And in an instant it turns scary. I was sweating so much trying to hold him down that my eyes were burning. I couldn’t clear the sweat from my forehead.
And I know if someone would see us at this very moment they’d assume we were hurting him. It’s such a difficult scene. To see a seven year old being held down by an adult and a teenager. It’s simply heartbreaking.
After what seemed like forever, he finally calmed down. He was sweating and tired. But he was calmn.
And then the realization hit him. The realization that he had hurt us. And then he was sorry. He couldn’t stop crying. He couldn’t stop trying to kiss his sister and me.
He couldn’t stop apologizing in his own way.
He was sorry. He needed reassurance that he was forgiven and that he was loved. We talked to him. We try to get him to understand that he can’t do this. That he needs to try to hold his emotions and anger.
Yeah today was rough. What should have been a nice afternoon turned into a chaotic mess with scratches all over.
But then calmn and forgiveness came. And now we move on.