Yesterday morning, I brought out Gianna's lunchbox to package something I needed to keep cool to bring across town. Gianna bebopped into the kitchen and stopped short. "My lunchbox!!" She looked happily surprised.
You know what she thought, right?
"I'm going back to my day program! My life!"
It broke my heart to tell her "No, G, no Kennedy Center today."
She launched into self-talk to calm herself. "It's OK, No Kennedy Center today. Maybe Kennedy Center will open in May."
Kennedy Center probably will not open in May. And G will not be carrying her lunch box anytime soon.
What do you miss? Whom do you miss? What about your loved one with autism? We have some rough situations going on in homes. We have families whose children are in residential school or group homes and unable to see family. There is a family where Mom, Dad and the teen with autism have COVID. Dad passed away. Alone. Mom is home sick. And the teen with autism is in seclusion in a hospital with severe, severe behaviors for which he is being chemically restrained. Alone.
Gianna uses Nick Jr and that calendar you see on the counter to calm herself and feel safe. Me? I use the Siriusly Sinatra channel on Sirius Satellite radio. The old standards of Sinatra, Martin, Bennett, Lee, Horne, Satchmo and Darrin remind me of the safety of childhood and my parents listening to the record albums on the large, console stereo "hi-fi." This song came on and I thought it was appropriate in a way wholly unintended by the writer.
People who need people,
Are the luckiest people in the world
We're children, needing other children
And yet letting a grown-up pride
Hide all the need inside
Acting more like children than children
Listen, even if you aren't an old fogey like me.
Stay well. Stay safe.