Going out.

This week end was interesting. We decided to treat Kallan for his birthday and go out for the afternoon to get some dessert and let him spend some birthday money.

We tried to be organised. Packed nappies wipes, the pram. We were getting dessert which is Paddy’s favourite food so it seemed like it should have been ok.

Kallan wanted to go to San Churros. A Mexican dessert restaurant. It is right by the water. We chose to sit outside so Patrick could look at the water, boats, seagulls and dolphins!

From the minute we got there he cried. The food came out and he just threw it on the ground. He kept banging his head against his pram tray and kicking and thrashing.

We tried our best for half an hour to keep him calm but after a few looks and not enjoying our food or drinks ourselves we decided to grab some take away containers and take our food further down the foreshore where Patrick would be calm.

I understand that as paying customers we have every right to stay and try to teach Patrick but I also understand that many others have spent their money to enjoy a meal out and if I can’t calm Pat and he is disrupting others I will remove him.

The next day we decided to go for a Sunday drive. We have recently purchased a new car and wanted to take it for a nice big cruise.

We took The kids to see a waterfall. They all loved it, especially Patrick! We had to deal with a meltdown leaving.

We then headed off for a scenic hill drive through a beautiful forest, which all the kids enjoyed. Lots to see out the window.

We stopped in a small town and Jeff wanted to get a pub meal. I was sceptical after the day before hadn’t gone so well but this time there was a fenced off outdoor area to eat. There was not really many others in the pub and we had brought Patrick’s bouncy balls. His favourite toys.

While waiting for our meal outside Patrick was happy for awhile bouncing his balls. After about 20 minutes what I thought was the melt down started. Just as our food was ready.

He began banging his head and crying, he wouldn’t play with his bouncy balls. Jeff was trying to help him and then I decided to try a different tactic. I told him off. I made him sit next to me and sit still and told him he was going to eat lunch first and then we could go. By the time our meals came out he had stopped carrying on.

So to me this was a tantrum! This has given me a lot to think about. With autism it can be hard to differentiate what is autism and what is just bad behaviour. This is amplified when he is non-verbal.

In the end we all enjoyed a meal out, we finished our food in the restaurant and had a nice day out!

Jess.

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