Wednesday, 11 June 2014

Bringing home siblings to the autistic child......

When we first found out we were pregnant with a second child we were super excited. We knew we had some experience with our first and were ready to bring a second into the world. I think one of the things that excited us most was that Keltanys would have a permanent playmate. We knew he learnt language well after hanging out with his cousins and sharing skills with one another. We couldn't wait to see how he would interact with his sibling. Well, I often am surprised by my little man and when we were about to bring our little girl into the world he shocked me even more.

First, I will be honest and say that I was in latent labor for a week and a half and during that week he stayed with his Grandmother. My son does not like seeing other people in pain and when it becomes to much he gets a little scrappy. 

On November 7, 2013 we brought our daughter home. Two days after that Keltanys came home. I'll be honest, it was hell. I don't think he liked the idea of Mom and Dad spending time away from him. Which I'm not gonna lie felt good to know. 

Anyway, he was not happy with us, but absolutely loved and still loves his sister. We experienced his wrath for leaving him out of the loop on that one, for about two weeks. In those two weeks he mainly just cried and wore his heart on his sleeve and I can't blame him. I think what made it so hard was that I didn't know how to fix it at first but as time went on he adjusted. If I were to do it again it would probably be different as Keltanys is growing, is super smart, and can definitely put 2 and 2 together. 

Now, at first when we brought our girly home he didn't mind her. He loved her but didn't pay to to much attention to her. And as the days went by displayed all the typical signs of having a sibling. If it was good for his sister he had to have it too. Not everything obviously as he is a pretty big kid. But cuddle time left me absolutely no room to move. Which I thought was more than fantastic considering cuddling was a no-no before his sister came home. Cuddling now is better but only on his terms which I don't mind. I think what helped a lot is that we prepared him by getting him a baby doll and showing him how we love the baby and take care of baby. So he had some prep. 

Another thing we observe is his need to take care of her. Always making sure she has everything she can play with, is something he religiously does to this day. If she manages to cover her face with her blanket he's on it pulling it away from her face and reminding her, "Don't do that." It is beyond precious. And there's one thing I love that she does for him. Breaking the boundaries. 

After perfectly lining up some stuffed animals which he was tucking in with a blanket, she destroyed the line like a hurricane, crawling over the toys, picking them up, tossing them aside, it was pretty awesome to watch the interaction. And what shocked me was that  Keltanys joined her in her folly. He started his tumbling and she laughed so hard, it made me cry. He was joining in and loving making her laugh. Something some specialists will warn you  you may never see. 

And I saw it. Eltiyena is so great for him. He has leaned the art of sharing, of being gentle, of realization outside himself. It is a beautiful thing to see him unfold before our eyes. And I must say having two kids who learn very differently is awesome. I wouldn't have it any other way. Both of them are so unique and I love it. 

As always thanks for reading!

Amber Jones

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