Lately, I've been having an even harder time than I usually do finding matching socks for Janey. I swear I can buy 100 pairs of matched socks, and within weeks, I have 100 socks, none of which match each other. It's a mystery. But it's been getting worse and worse, and I think I figured out why. Janey keeps bringing me a couple socks and handing them to me. It's her way of saying "Let's get going!" She much prefers bare feet, and has figured out that when socks get put on her, it's time to go someplace.
And the place she wants to go all the time? The "Chips Store". The chips store is the CVS on the way to and from Janey's school. It's where we occasionally stop for Janey's treat---which is usually a can of Pringe's Salt and Vinegar Chips. It's something I'd do usually on a Friday, as an end of the week treat. Last week, because Janey asked so clearly and nicely, and because I needed something else there too, we went on something like a Tuesday. The next day, Janey again asked perfectly, saying something like "I want to go to the chips store. Can you say Please?" and I couldn't resist. Then a third day last week, I needed to pick up books at the library across from the CVS, so I told her if she was very, very good while I picked up the books (which she often is not---libraries bring out her urge to scream and throw things), we would go to the chips store. She was great in the library, so we went.
And of course, I've created a monster. She wakes up and the first thing she says to me is "Go to the chips store". She brings me socks, and sometimes for further emphasis, my pocketbook. She gets herself dressed as much as she can. She pulls out all the stops.
And that is fine, except I don't want her to have a can of chips a day. The medication she is on can cause weight gain, but hasn't in her at all yet. I worry about weight issues as Tony is an insulin-dependent diabetic, as are most all the members of his family. They have a hugely genetic form of Type 2 diabetes, which hits them hard. Despite all Tony's hard work, he is going to have to start having more shots a day and more testing. It's the auto-immune issue popping up again---my favorite autism theory. I have autoimmune thyroid disease, Freddy and I both have asthma, another auto-immune disorder---it pops up on both sides of the family all over.
I wish I could find something else Janey loves as much and is as motivated by as the chips store. She is not like some kids with autism, with huge obsessions with certain topics or foods or items, although she gets crushes on things for a while, like Funions or certain songs. But the chips store is showing me the power of her increasing ability to make connections and plans. She is thinking ahead---"I need socks on to go to the chips store". She is controlling her behavior---"I need to be quiet in the library if I want to go to the chips store" She is using speech to actually ask for the store. It's pretty cool to see. I wish they sold very small cans of Pringles---we'd go every day!