We had a great day today.
This morning was our Helping Hands ASD Family Support Group. One of the mums who comes brought along her dad, who does photography. He brought along a background, some props, and proper lights. Some of us wore Christmas jumpers, some of the kids wore Christmas jumpers, we had lots of photographs taken and it was a much more relaxed environment than taking the kids to a photography studio. They had fun, they messed about, they were relaxed and enjoying themselves and we got photos taken. I’m hoping we can use them for Christmas cards / gifts. Last year we were let down massively last-minute by the photographer I’d booked and I wasn’t able to get professional photos done of the boys before Christmas. I’m really looking forward to seeing how they came out.
After group, we came home and had lunch, and after that Picklepot’s girlfriend came round for a play date. They were noisy, they were silly, they made a big mess, they had fun, they enjoyed themselves. It kept Picklepot entertained – without him being glued to the TV, playing computer games or annoying his little brother all afternoon. Daddy P was off work, so he kept Sunshineface happy while I got on with my work. It was all good.
I did the kids dinner around 6 and then Picklepot’s girlfriend was picked up around half past. Picklepot had his afters, he had his usual milkshake and cookie, and everything seemed fine. We watched some cartoons and then went upstairs to put the boys to bed.
At this point it all went wrong. Picklepot had already been asked to tidy up his room. When we got upstairs he started messing around and not tidying up his room. Things quickly escalated between him and Daddy P and got a bit loud and a bit crazy and ended up with tears and screams of “I hate you” and Picklepot coming to tell me how mean Daddy was, and when I sided with Daddy P he started shouting at me. After about half an hour of that he still hadn’t got any further with tidying his room, so I suggested that maybe we should have a game. I suggested that we should see who could pick up the stuff quicker – daddy with the bin bag to throw things away or Picklepot to put things away. Picklepot really wasn’t happy about that and the meltdown continued but he did manage to sort things out.
He really was overtired and I should have seen it coming considering the busy day he had, so I did kick myself that I didn’t, so tomorrow we’re just having a quiet day at home and I’m glad I planned it that way. I still have some work hours to do but not that many, and we can chill in our PJs and watch TV and cuddle and generally just have a day “off”. I forget sometimes that he needs that, because he does so well with coping most of the time. He’s had a full on week at school, Children In Need day on Friday which meant wearing PJs to school (which he was thrilled about) and then the photos today at group and having his girlfriend round to play, it was all too much and I’m sorry it ended in such an awful meltdown tonight. I wish I had realised sooner that it was too much for him.
Live and learn, right. Tomorrow is another day.