Hello all! Here it is, my very overdue blog! Life with JP has had it’s ups and downs in the last few months, certainly a lot more ups though:
- He has started pre-school 5 mornings a week, he loves it – mainly because they have a Peppa Pig guitar that he can play with!
- He has developed so many more words and is trying to speak at every occasion.
- He is still fun loving and is developing such a fantastic sense of humour.
As much as I am enjoying his ups, we still have our downs. As JP has now started pre-school, we have also had to begin looking at schools – Special needs schools. I think it was this fact that triggered me off thinking about this blog – it was another reminder that the path JP will take will be different from the one I had envisaged and hoped for him.
Autism is a life-long condition and it sometimes feels that just as you overcome one hurdle it gets replaced by at least one more. You constantly feel as if you are in a state of limbo, not knowing what each day will bring; progress, regression or additional issues. Mix in the fact that JP is a 4-year-old boy and it becomes extremely difficult to decipher which is his autism and which is him just being a 4 year old.
Then there are the professionals that we encounter, teachers, healthcare professionals and therapists who – rightly so – cannot give us a definitive answer on when the pulling/ pinching and biting will end, when he will develop full speech, how independent will he be? Again adding to the feeling of being in limbo – just waiting…
I then got onto thinking about my work – I am a children’s performer/ entertainer – one of the most popular games I have found has to be a Limbo competition. There is something that appeals to children (and grown-ups) of all ages – please bear with me, this does have a point. You set the height they go around, in a circle, and it gets lower and lower as they go around and around.
Here comes the point – each time the children come around to the Limbo they look at the current height (different from the last time) and work out a way to get underneath it. My thinking is that being in Limbo about JP’s situation isn’t very fun for anyone. However, playing Limbo is much more fun: each time JP and I go around and we face a different issue we need to look at it and work out a way to get underneath it.