This morning Jeremy said he wanted to go to church. I checked a couple of time to make sure that that is what he really wanted to do as he had been up a good part of the night in a hyper happy state. This was following a period of three weeks where he was happy, but calm and relaxed.
We got to the church, but he didn’t want to get out of the car. I convinced him to get out and we head up to the service (Unitarian Universalist) which is held outdoors in a beautiful setting under pine trees. Jeremy really likes this place. But today, Jeremy could not or would not sit still; looking at a book did not help. Finally he started foraging in his backpack for a ‘toy’ – any kind of string, ribbon or piece of rope. And he sat there and stimmed. Then he got up and stated to prance away as if to leave. I convinced him to go back to sit down. Then, an elderly woman sat down next to him and pulled out a cookie and started to eat it. Of course I didn’t know this till I heard a commotion next to me and realized that Jeremy had grabbed the cookie out of her hands (but really – why was she eating a cookie during church service? I wasn’t looking out for that). Then he left running towards the parking lot. I had no alternative but to follow him.
Many times Jeremy has problems controlling his body or organizing himself and he needs his “rules” or help from us. His spirit is willing but his flesh is weak is how I describe it. This time I think perhaps he just wanted to go for the ride in the car to church and hear Dave Matthews in the car. It doesn’t matter that he has a high school diploma or that he can communicate by typing or that his mom is supposed to be knowledgeable when it comes to autism stuff – sometimes he is just not himself and he seems unable to communicate about it. We used to blame behavior changes on the full moon because it would happen once a month for a couple of days, but it appears to be a different cycle now. Maybe he is sick? I just had the flu, maybe he is coming down with it. Maybe he is nervous because we have been interviewing new support staff, and even though he helps interview and loves the people we have found, it is still a change. At any rate, these moments are frustrating. As a professional, my brain is taking notes and comparing data, trying to find the ABC’s of the behavior, looking at possible causes for the behavior. Meanwhile, the parent in me is tired and worried and hope he will go back to his usual pattern of sleeping through the night and wake up his usual sunny self tomorrow.
I’m hoping tonight is going to look like this :