For most of their lives my poor boys haven’t had much chance to interact with other children. It’s just been them in their own little bubble. They didn’t go to daycare, we don’t have family or friends who also have small children, there have been no birthday parties, no play dates, nothing. Even though they’ve been in school this year, it’s tough for them I think to make friends and relate to other children. Ironically, Jay actually may have an easier time than Ace. He seems to go back and forth quite easily between group activities and playing on his own. Ace on the other hand is a very socially needy child. He needs constant attention and has a really tough time entertaining himself. I used to think he was a very typical boy but as it turns out he is slightly awkward when he’s around other children. I’ve been quietly worrying about it for a while now but more so since I chaperoned a field trip and saw how different he was from the other boys in the class. Everyone seemed to be on the same page except for Ace. He just wasn’t clicking with them. I hated to see him get left out of the group. It didn’t seem malicious or intentional though. It was almost as if everyone just accepted that he has different interests from them and had no idea how to join in their games. I saw it again this past weekend at the playground in our town. There were a number of boys in his age group playing and he tried so hard to get them to play with him but no-one was interested. They all seemed to be in a groove and there he was … an odd piece in the puzzle. He eventually gave up and came and asked me to play with him. I gave him some advice on how to join in with the other boys but he looked at me with the saddest eyes and said “but I don’t know how“. Heart breaking!!
Before I go on let me tell you that I spend A LOT of time on the internet reading about ASD. You may even say I have become slightly obsessed with learning all I can about the spectrum. I now use it to explain a lot of the behaviours I see in the people I come across. You know what’s coming now right? Of course, I start to wonder about my Ace. Could he possibly be on the spectrum also? Have I been so focused on Jay and his obvious issues that I missed the signs in Ace? I mean, some of the signs are definitely there. He talks constantly, with no concept of time or place appropriateness. When he can’t think of something to say he asks random questions that he already knows the answers to. It’s like he just can’t help himself or stop himself from talking. On the playground he runs around wildly, and pulls and bumps into people with no regard for politeness. He lives his whole life repeating lines from movies and no matter what situation he’s in, he uses a line from a TV show or movie to express himself. He struggles with using scissors and holding a pencil correctly when writing. I’ve even noticed that the only game he ever seems to want to play is tag, which he got from an episode of Max and Ruby. Even the line he uses to try to get people to play with him came straight from that show. If he wants to play he’ll say, “You can’t catch me“, and then run away. It’s odd.
I know I may be seeing something that isn’t there, afterall, the things I’m seeing could easily be missed if Iwasn’t LOOKING for them, but I would be doing my angel a disservice if I don’t check it out. So now I’m rolling my sleeves up and scheduling more doctors appointments and more evaluations.