Tuesday, January 17, 2017


B & I - this picture has nothing to do with this post
but I love it!
Let me categorically state that I am not a fan of Pokemon.  I don't understand it.  I don't really want to.  The little critters creep me out.  Alright, on with our story.

B-man is back on the Pokemon bandwagon.  He carries around the cards.  He talks about the critters.  He asked me to get him hooked up on Pokemon Go.  When the Pokemon Go craze first began we struggled to get signed up.  Zac procured an account and let B 'help' him.  But Zac is over it and B wanted his own account.  It was not easy.  I had to set up a parent account then create a child's account for B. Then when we thought he was ready to go, I still had to go back into my account and his to accept the terms of service.

Fast forward to this past Sunday.  B and I were at church for his special needs Sunday school class.  He discovered that our church was a Pokestop.  Woowhoo! (sarcasm)  The trouble with B's Pokemon hunting is that his iPad is aging quickly.  He often gets an error that says "GPS signal lost".  Sunday morning he got such a message and his little Pokemon hunter dude looked as if it was standing in the middle of the highway.

This proved to be a major problem.

As we tried everything we could to make his iPad realize that we were at the Pokestop.  B grew more and more frustrated. I tried to keep him calm.  I asked him where he was on the feeling chart.  He was able to tell me he was in the red zone.  When I asked him how he could move to the yellow or green zone, he screamed "NOTHING!"

Things went downhill from there.

By the end, I was a muddy mess, we were both crying and about 20 people wish they had been on time to church that morning.

I liken B's meltdowns to a seizure.  His eyes glaze over.  His noises are guttural.  He is not in control. When he comes out of it, he's wasted. He slumps into my arms.  I rock him and rub his back.  Generally, he's back to normal within 30 minutes.

Not me, I carry these incidents with me.  They effect me for days.  I replay the incident and try to figure out what I could have done to stop the meltdown or prevent it.  I try to remember that he's not in control but I still get my feelings hurt by the things he says.

I know I shouldn't but I worry about what strangers think when they see us embroiled in this dance.  Me trying to keep a hold of B, protecting him from danger and he trying to get away.  It must look awful. It feels awful from my end.  

As hard as the meltdowns are for me, I know they are out of B's control.  He's not choosing to throw a fit.  In those moments, the world is just too much for him.  I can't imagine how hard they are for him.  I can think of times when I've felt so completely out of control and overwhelmed.  It's an awful feeling.

And, as hard as those moments are, I wouldn't trade them away.  Those are the hard portions of autism, yes.  But without those moments, B wouldn't be who he is.  I don't want to decry or discount any part of him.  I love all parts of him.  Even the muddy, messy, screaming parts.

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