Know why I took this picture?
No, it’s not because it shows off that my kids sheets don’t match.
It’s cause I caught Jay wearing a Captain America mask.
Know why that’s note worthy?
Cause he was wearing a MASK on his FACE.
Know why else that’s awesome?
Cause Jay went and picked it out himself and put it on.
Captain America has nothing to do with animals and…
Anytime Jay shows an interest in something new it gets me excited and …
Cause the next day he put on the full costume and …
Cause when he says “Captain America” it sounds sooooo cute and …
Cause I still get giggly when I hear him say new things and …
Cause after he put on the costume he then went and got a Captain America toy.
He played appropriately with an action figure!!!
(Let that soak in)
Then after he was done playing with the action figure he initiated a pretend fight game with Ace and …
He had sound effects to go with the pretend punches and kicks he was giving Ace.
(Think old school bat man) – bluurrzzztt and psshhhhtttt
Once Ace saw what Jay was doing, he quickly went and put on an Iron Man costume to make the game more authentic. Ace LOVES this kind of playing but has never before had a brother who would play with him this way.
They played together and …
They laughed together and …
Did I mention that it had nothing to do with animals or the alphabet or i-Pads?
It was totally new and unprompted.
Jay was so happy wearing his costume that we even went to the supermarket with the kids donned in costumes and masks. We were quite the hit with the other boys there.
Jay’s love of animals is still as strong as ever. I’m not trying to move him away from that. Not at all. I encourage all his interests. I just think it’s pretty awesome that he is expanding them.
Last night when I got home, he was in the full Captain America costume, playing with a train and the tub of animals that Nanas gave him. It was a beautiful sight.
The emergence of this new interest and Jay’s desire to play WITH Ace, came at a good time for me. This week we got the latest report about Jay’s development. Reading those reports are difficult on my heart. There are pages on top of pages talking about percentages and lows and averages and delays and placements.
But this time around, I am focusing on one main part of the report. The part that said Jay has met (and in some cases exceeded) all the goals that were set for him following the previous evaluation 3 years ago and the part that talked about how smart he is and how much progress he has made and the part that talked about how happy he is and even the part that talked about how mischievous he is. Being mischievous is a way for him to engage with others and to seek reactions from others and to connect with others in some way. It demonstrates an awareness of the world around him and of his place in it and of what’s expected vs what’s not and it shows an understanding of cause (his behaviour) and effect (our reactions) so that goes in the “positives” section.
One of the core deficits in autism is in social behavior. Regarding playing, Auties tend to restrict their play to a limited selection of objects or even an isolated part of an object. Many children with autism seem to be self-absorbed and seem to have little desire to communicate or engage with playmates.
My Jay is blowing that out of the water more and more everyday and I love it because it makes my Ace happy to have a real play mate in his brother and also because Jay is happy doing it.