Wednesday, July 6, 2016


Once upon a time, a physical therapist told us the B would do best in an individual sport like gymnastics or martial arts.  Last summer I signed B up for a karate camp at the Sensable Gym, a gym designed for kids with special needs.  He loved camp! He loved his Sensei! We signed up for karate lessons!

B received Most Spirited
Award from his awesome Sensei
He enjoyed karate lessons but each lesson almost always ended in a meltdown.  His Sensei was so patient and loving with him.  He always struck a great balance between pushing him and letting him have his space.  If I'm perfectly honest, though, karate lessons were hard for me. It was hard to see him lose it every week.  I was hard to stand my ground when he wanted to quit.  But I really wanted him to have a sport or activity that was his.  We took a break from karate after Christmas.  We gave it another shot later in the Spring but he wasn't having it.

This past Spring, B expressed an interest in football.  He even attended football camp put on by our high school coaches.  It was a great experience.  He's signed up to play on our local youth league team for the fall and Ryan is going to coach.  I'm a little nervous but excited for him as well.

Our neighbors are among our best friends.  They have a daughter B's age.  They get along great.  I think he's spent as much time at their house this summer as he's spent at ours.  Their daughter takes gymnastics lessons.  B tagged along to lessons one day and the coach let him participate.  He loved it.  Last week, he wanted to go again.  My friend asked if she could sign him up.  Sure, why not!?!

I have had a discussion with my neighbor about how B acts differently when I'm not around. Our plan is for her to take him to gymnastics and I'll come later to watch.  Yesterday was the first day for this plan.

When I came in they were stretching and warming up.  Then they lined up and crossed the floor doing various things like jumping and rolling.  In this processes, they were supposed to cartwheel down the floor.  B waited patiently (for him) until all the other boys went then he told the coach he didn't know how to cartwheel.  The coach very patiently showed him how to do it.

Throughout the lesson, whenever B would say "I don't know how to do it!"  The coach would reply, "I know, I'm teaching you".  He never seemed to get irritated with B.  He corrected him on both form and gym etiquette.

B was frustrated most of the lesson.  Some of the boys are not beginners.  However, he stayed with his group and tried each activity.  He did leave the group one time. But the coach was patient with him.  He asked him to rejoin the group then left him alone.  Within a few minutes, B was back with the group.

After the lesson B was not too happy.  He was tired.  We had a bad storm the night before that interrupted his sleep.  He didn't want to talk about the lesson.  Even later in the evening, he didn't want to talk.

But he didn't say he was quitting either.  And that's progress!

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