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Monday, June 28, 2010

Splash Park

I took Janey this afternoon to a splash park near us, a really nicely done one that used to be a wading pool and now has lots of fountain type things to cool off in. My friend Maryellen got us to go---she is very good at helping out with Janey and encouraging me to try things with her. It went pretty well. Janey was quite happy there. She seemed to like seeing all the kids, and she didn't mind the water. I think if we hadn't worked to get her in the water, she would have mostly walked circles around the edges, waving her arms around, but with a little encouragement she went into the water areas. It's interesting how other kids react to her. Kids her age or younger seem to have no clue she isn't totally mainstream. A boy ran up to her and tagged her and said "You're it!" and a girl brought over a Toy Story Pez and tried repeatedly to show it to Janey. Janey pretty much ignores them, but they don't seem to notice or mind---maybe a non-interested kid is less threatening if you are a little shy or something. Older kids seem to see there is something odd about her, but I haven't yet seen one making fun of her---I hope I never do, but that's too much to hope. Adults almost always now seem to know either that she is autistic or that something is odd about her. She gets some stares---mostly when she is yelling with anger or with happiness, or just really getting into circling and flapping. I don't mind the stares as much as I thought I would before I had a child like her. She's who she is, and usually I am concentrating so much on making sure she's okay that I don't have a lot of time to worry about it. She did a cute thing at the park---for about 15 minutes, she put her thumb in the "thumbs up" position to show she liked being there. The crying today was limited to the morning scream. I will have to see how things are tomorrow with Tony at work. She has no sense of work or why he should sometimes be home and sometimes not. I think that must be scary---the boys are sometimes here and sometimes not, as is Tony. It's why I don't go many places---I need her to have someone she knows will pretty much always be around.

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