The Now

14 01 2008

My son is now 6-years old and is in Year 1 at a private English school. These are some of his quirks at the age of six:

  • He is obsessed with cars. He counted how many toy cars he has and I think he’s up to 107. (Spoiled, much?) He talks about them constantly. When he’s not talking about them, he’s playing with them. And if he’s not playing with them, lining them up, or talking about them, he’s playing Gran Turismo on the Playstation – not really racing the cars, but going through the menu and looking at all the different cars. He can tell you where each car is manufactured. He knows every make and model. He takes pictures of them with my cell phone and digital camera. Naturally, he has them all lined up on my formal living room couch. When we took him to the Christmas Bazaar last year, he deleted all pictures of people (including him and sister with Santa) and walked around the parking lot to take pictures of car emblems. He also deleted all pictures of people on my Dell laptop and replaced them with car logos. He’s not allowed to be on the computer by himself anymore and I gave him my old cell phone to use for picture taking.
  • I have to constantly tell him to go to the bathroom. Even when he gets up in the morning, I have to remind him to go to the bathroom to pee. On one rather busy morning I forgot, and he ended up holding it all day until he came home from school, and then only after I told him did he go. Last year, he started having “accidents” with bowel movements. He still has accidents on a regular basis. He never flushes the toilet.
  • He still comes to our room in the middle of the night. He told me he senses in his sleep that I’m not with him and that’s why he comes to my room to sleep. This is probably wrong of me, but recently I’ve started sleeping in his bed because the way it was working was leading to none of us getting enough sleep. I’m trying to leave and sleep in my own bed every other night until he gets used to sleeping alone. I don’t know what else to do.
  • He freaks out if a drop of water or food gets on his clothes while eating. He cries and runs up the stairs to change. I’ve been making progress on this by purposely dropping water on my shirt and telling him to see how I don’t make a big deal out of it.
  • He’s extremely picky about eating. At this point we’re down to sandwiches (cream cheese or peanut butter and fluff, only), pizza, chicken nuggets, fries, macaroni and cheese, apples and white rice. When his lunch or dinner is plated, he cannot have different foods touching one another; i.e. fries must not be touching nuggets. Last year we ordered him a “Happy Face” pancake at IHOP and he had a meltdown because they weren’t just pancakes but pancakes with whipped cream on them in the form of a happy face. He will only drink KDD Passion Fruit juice, Actimel or milk.
  • He still flaps his hands/arms when excited or nervous.
  • He wraps tissue (Kleenex) around his fingers (one on each hand) and twists his hands constantly, pretending the tissues are girls. He does this when bored or nervous.
  • He has a hard time focusing on homework and his teacher told me that he has a hard time going from one task to the next.
  • He knows nearly every country in the world, the capitals of each country and their flags.
  • Last year, we were at Chilis having dinner and he got bored, went through my purse, fished out a Stephen King book and started reading it out loud. His reading level is at adult level.
  • He has problems with anger, shouting, moods and sharing.
  • He has an over attachment to one parent (that would be me) and might explain his inability to sleep on his own.
  • He doesn’t like to be cuddled and doesn’t like to be held for too long.
  • It’s hard for him to be loving towards anyone but me. We were shocked when he displayed attachment to my cousin Kerrie last summer. My husband says it’s because we look and act alike. (I don’t know how much we look alike but I often say that Kerrie and I are one soul in two bodies.)
  • He doesn’t like talking on the phone and when he does, he usually shouts or swears.
  • He doesn’t like big loud get-togethers. Birthday or children’s parties are a nightmare.
  • Fire alarms and store security alarms bother him.

I have no idea if any of the above points have anything to do with PDD, I just listed out where we are now with my son. Some things I’ve mentioned are personal and it’s been hard to share them here. I’m doing this to help him, me, and anyone else out there who is dealing with a child with Aspergers/Autism/PDD.