Friday, August 15, 2008

Thoughts on travel with an Autistic child

With our Joseph, some things are hard, some are not.  Travel brings new, unpredictable challenges.  

Sleep--The first few days were tricky.  We were in a friends house, not a hotel.  There were a lot of things to touch and play with that could be a problem.  Joseph was actually pretty good, but I was tense about it.  He slept well, but I didn't.  Considering we were two time zones west of home, the fact that he slept 'till after 6 AM each morning was a miracle.   Once we moved into a hotel/condo sleeping was somewhat easier for me.   At that point the only problem was how easily the condo door opened--he discovered that early on, and I had a bit of trouble sleeping for fear that he would get up early and wander out to the lobby and the staff would not know what to make of this odd child!   

Eating out--The photos tell the whole story.  Why can't a menu be a hat?   FYI the shirt is wet from drinking water in the car out of a water bottle.  Thankfully, he does not peel off wet clothes in public the way he does when he is at home...

Hiking--We shamelessly used Sponge Bob videos on my iphone to bribe Joseph to walk or hike.  The deal was "you make it to the end of the trail, or the top of the hill or whatever, you are rewarded with Mom's phone and a video."   We had a few strange looks from fellow travelers, and had I been in their shoes instead of mine, I'd have judged the parenting skills harshly.   At this point, letting him watch Sponge Bob gave me a chance to sit in almost quiet and 
enjoy the view and the almost peace.   At least Alex will pose for a photo! 

Naps--By the end of the trip, Joseph was so tired, he would fall asleep anywhere.  He napped on the ski lift.  He napped on the sail boat.  He slept the entire trip home on the airplane.  On one hand, he missed out on part of the experience.  On the other hand, who cares.

1 comment:

hillary said...

It's been fun catching up on your blog. . . . I of course had a nice chuckle at my darling cousin with the menu on his head!!! Nate and I went to Arches NP a few years ago and loved it. It is so beautiful, I wish we knew you were there. . . . . . we were in Boise around the same time. Maybe we could have met up or something:(