Tuesday, May 4, 2010
It's an interesting experience, this parenting gig! Especially when you have one child with Autism and the other with Attitude! Button and Belle are two such different characters that watching them together is always going to be fun, but in recent weeks it's taken a whole new turn. Let me explain......
Button has never (and I actually mean NEVER) had a conversation with another child (including Belle) without being prompted and guided, and having some big pay off at the end. Usually chips. He just doesn't "do" children - I think they're too unpredictable for him.
Two weeks ago, he arrived home from school and as usual ran in to the sitting room to jump in the window and wave at the bus. Belle was in there on her laptop. I was just about to enter the room when i heard the following
Belle: Hello Button! How was your day?
Button: Fine thanks!
Belle: Good. What did you do?
Button: I played Bingo
Belle: What else?
Button: I did photocopying for Teacher
Belle: Wow! Very Good! Anything else?
Button: Work. I was working for the iTouch
To say that my jaw hit the floor would be an understatement. I was immediately on the phone to everyone I could think of, and posted it on facebook. Proud Mama moment!!!
But since then it has happened nearly every day. My children are actually talking to each other. And not just about what Button did in school. Belle will ask him a question and he will answer her directly. Nearly every time. He is also beginning to look for her to interact with and if I ask him to go and check if she's ok, he does it willingly. I have always felt that he loves her in his own way, but now we're seeing the beginnings of an actual sibling relationship, and it's beautiful to watch.
She's some girl, my daughter. A lot of kids would have given up trying by now, there's only so much being ignored a 4 year old can take. But not Belle. She is such a good sister to Button. She accepts him exactly as he is, and understands totally that he needs some help with things that she can do herself. She holds his hand (tightly!)when we're out, answers his many repetitive questions and gives him his favourite keys or teddy if she finds them lying around. She really is Button's best friend and ally in this world and I'm so proud of her!