Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Find Your Laugher Where You Can a/k/a Outings with Nicky

I remember when I was so scared, worried and embarrassed and everything was so serious I could not laugh. I'm glad it's better now. I know it's better because today I got a major laugh out of my trip with Nicky to the pharmacy. You already know I take Nicky everywhere, which includes boring errands.

Well thanks to his view of the world today’s errands were anything but boring. Our first trip was to the bank, where he did great. He sat quietly and watched the TV while I took care of our business. Then we were off to the pharmacy to get his prescriptions. It’s not uncommon that they don’t have his med’s in stock or that the line is long so waiting is a common event at the pharmacy. Nicky was restless so while I waited he occasionally jumped up and down and made noise to get himself regulated. People stare, but no problem, I am so used to it. It’s January and it’s cold outside – not freezing but not summer weather – so I am surprised to look up and see a tall lady in line wearing short shorts and a sheer mid drift top. I also notice that she had a band aid on her leg. Nicky is with me so my radar goes up.

Now for a little back story – 1. Nicky loves to touch tummies and bare skin on people. He likes to press his ear on people’s tummy’s arms and legs. We are all sensory tools for him to use for deep pressure and input. 2. Nicky does not like anything that has been added to a person from Band-Aids to nose rings, to hats to pacifiers. He spots them all. He has been known to take pacifiers from babies, stare at body piercings and pull band aids off of people. He wants things to be smooth. 3. He is fascinated by things that look different including: hairy legs, colored sunglasses and tattoos.

So I am always on the look out for these things which I know are Nicky magnets. I’m for the most part pretty good at cutting him off before he can get to a stranger and pull off their hat or push on their belly button. Oh, and I’m also pretty good at smoothing the reactions people get to having their personal boundaries invaded.

I know she looked like a sensory candy store for Nicky, so I go on the alert. My hands were full as I hear Nicky’s feet going in the direction of the lady in the shorts, exposed belly and hairy legs. I looked up to see her look of shock as Nicky ran his hand across her leg fascinated by her bare and hairy legs. YIKES….I calmly went over and said “Nicky you may not be warm enough for shorts but other people like them, sorry miss”. She gives me a sigh of relief and all is well.

I think to myself “I’m happy because I got there before he could pull off her band aid or push his ear on her tummy. Good save mom”. I return to the counter to finish paying for the medications. Next, I turn around to see a dwarf (who I personally know because we used to live in the same condo 5 years ago ) He is a great guy. Here’s the conversation.

Donna “Hi Danny”.

Danny “Hi” and he comments on how much Nicky had grown.

Nicky Looking at Danny “Short, grow”

Donna “How are you doing?”, “How is your wife?”

I try to body block Nicky a bit so I can continue the conversation. No luck.

Nicky Points and says “short, small, eat, grow”.

Donna “Danny it was great to see you. Happy New Year”.

I begin walking quickly with Nicky to the exit because although I’m not embarrassed I don’t want Nicky to yell anything out.

I woke up this morning and I just started laughing. I suddenly could see the entire series of events without the worry of "how people were feeling" and I just couldn’t stop laughing. Nicky with his “short, small, eat, grow” was one of the funniest things I have ever heard. His response was honest and perfectly reasonable from his perspective.

As for the lady in the shorts, heck there are risks to going out in winter is very little clothing!

Notes to myself and others:

  • Out of the mouths of babes applies for our kids too

  • Remember to say calm, it helps everyone. (imagine if I had been nervous how much it could have stressed the others)

  • Our kids honesty can be fun and refreshing

  • Take our joy where we can get it, it may not come in the expected places but it does come!

  • If we forget to laugh we will go crazy…so laugh (even if you have to wait and do it alone)

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