Where was I? Oh yes! Jay and I had just had a successful afternoon together at my place of employment. The following day, Ace had no school at all, so, after we put Jay onto his bus at 7:15 in the morning, Ace and I headed to work. Here’s the thing that I don’t think many people realize … Even though Jay is the one with the autism, Ace is very often, way more of a handful than Jay. Ace has A LOT of energy. He CANNOT sit still. There was no way a white board and one green marker would have kept him entertained for longer than 5 minutes, let alone 3 hours.
For Ace, I had packed our Kindle Fire, a DVD, snacks, juice, an activity book and I was fully prepared to bribe him with a new Lego set. The plan was to tell him that if he behaved well in the morning, we could go out at lunch time to Toys R Us and he could have some Legos to build in the afternoon.
In the car I gave him the “You need to be quiet and polite and calm and don’t run around and please for the love of God just do what I ask you to do” speech.
Once we got to my desk, Ace wanted to play on my laptop. He wanted something to eat. He wanted money for the vending machine. He wanted to spin in my chair. He wanted to run around and see who else was there that he knew. He wanted to look at the things hanging on my wall. He wanted to “just go see” what was in the vending machine. He wanted Gatorade from the vending machine. He wanted water. He went and came back with a cup of water. I made him go pour it out. He wanted to use the bathroom. He wanted to look in my bag to see all the things I had brought.
And that was only the first 10 minutes.
I set him up with a spare computer and the DVD and asked him to please just sit and watch the movie. That lasted on and off for a while. In between the movie, he drew on my white board and he spun in my chair every time I got up for something and he walked around a bit. He ate his snacks and drank his juice and somehow managed to get enough change to buy something at the vending machine. He even stumbled upon some of our younger employees putting together a 4D puzzle of NY City on a big table so he stayed and watched that for a while.
All in all, he wasn’t too disruptive.
It helped that it was a day before a holiday weekend so there were a lot of people off and those who were there were in a jovial mood. We were even having a cook off contest that day so there was definitely some loosy-goosy-ness in the office. Yay for that!
One of my co-workers handed him a stack of coloured pencils and asked him to draw her a picture. So he did. Then he drew one for Nanas and one for Aunty Juddles and another for Aunty Naffie.
At some point when I
wasn’t paying any attention to him was working diligently, he discovered the copy machine. This was a good thing. He made copies of his “Happy Thanks Giving” turkey picture and went around handing them out to everyone who was there.
The drawing of the pictures and the subsequent handing out of the pictures actually kept him busy and quiet-ish for a long time.
Ultimately, not unlike the day before, I was able to be productive and I didn’t even have to pull out the Lego card.
We were two for two on the bring the son to work with you potentially nerve-wracking events of 2013 🙂 .
Oh wait, I’m not out of the woods yet. The annual pot luck is coming up soon. *Sigh*
P.S. Thanks to all my co-workers who were welcoming and cheerful and tolerant and good sports with my boys. I do appreciate it.