Friday, July 3, 2009


Last week I was getting Bitty dressed, and since he was sitting on the bed I put his shirt on first since that was easiest / most accessible. Then I had him stand up and take off his pull-up so I could put on his underwear, shorts, and socks. Before I could get his socks on, he stripped down and looked at me with a mischievous laugh. I knew right away what the problem was, I had wondered as I dressed him if he'd let me get away with it.

Apparently not. I did it wrong. In the wrong order, that is.

Underwear goes first. Then shirt, then shorts, and then socks.

I started over, in the right order, and that time he kept his clothes on :).


Last night, Bitty came up to me and said "foh an' five." I repeated it back absentmindedly, since I was in the middle of a conversation with dh. "four and five."

He said it again, a little more urgently this time. I didn't know what he meant.

He stopped to think for a moment, apparently reconsidering his strategy although I didn't really take notice at the time since I was still talking to dh.

Bitty grabbed my hand, said, "pull!" and started trying to pull me up. I was still in the middle of a conversation, so I resisted. He was not easily deterred. If pulling wouldn't work, he'd try pushing. He got up on the couch behind me and started trying to push me off the couch.

At that point, I admit I got a little exasperated. "What do you want, 'Bitty'?"

I didn't realize he'd already told me and I missed it. And he's been doing so good lately with requests that I was confused as to why he was resorting to the "brute force" method of asking me for help (on the bright side - he wasn't pulling my hair!).

Have I mentioned he's a persistent guy? I got up and let him take my hand. "Ok, show me what you want." He pulled me up the stairs and into my darkened bedroom. I flipped on the light switch, wondering what he could possibly want in my room and at the same time relieved that he didn't want me to climb up into the attic yet again.

He did his little happy-dance as he pointed under the bed and repeated, "foh an' five."

Lightbulb moment. It was obvious that he needed help getting something out from under my bed, and as soon as he said "foh an' five" I knew what it must be. Sure enough, I looked under and found two coal tenders, one belonging to Gordon (#4) and one belonging to James (#5).

It took a little effort but I was able to retrieve the coal cars and he was a happy camper. I felt bad about my earlier frustration and thinking he hadn't tried to tell me what he wanted before pulling and pushing me around, when in fact he HAD tried and I hadn't caught it.

At the same time, I found myself yet again admiring his tenacity in trying to communicate. He used to show no interest in trying to communicate. Now, he gets creative when he needs to, he gets a little forceful when he needs to, but he does what he can to try and overcome his communication difficulties and my sometimes-lacking detective skills so he can get his point across.


We had some dinnertime battles this week. Most notable was the one where we drew the line and insisted that Bitty at least try the pot roast that dh had made. He wanted "sih-mun" (cinnamon toast crunch). I had already made him a small plate with some meat, potatoes, and carrots, all cut into small bites for him. He took one look at his plate and pushed it away. "Sih-mun"

I know full well that if we push too hard we're likely to end up with a plateful of food on the floor (because he'll feel the need to make his point more adamantly to make sure we understand him)so I tried to be diplomatic.

"You can have some cinnamon after you eat some of your roast."

"No woste. Sih-mun"

"No cinnamon until you at least try some of your roast." I offered him a bite, which he pushed away as if I'd offered him a forkful of worms.

I know he has issues with certain textures, but based on things he has eaten before I knew he could handle what I'd given him. He likes potatoes (sometimes at least) and he likes chicken, and the roast texture doesn't seem to be all that different from chicken.

He started crying because he was hungry but didn't want his dinner. Not wanting to give in on the cereal (which would just reinforce him holding out in the future), we offered him a compromise alternative - chicken nuggets. Luckily he was ok with that.

Meanwhile, Cuddlebug & Bearhug tried gravy for the first time w/ their roast and they loved it! They were skeptical of the potatoes and carrots but they at least tried them. That's pretty huge, they are getting to a point where they'll at least try something new (and if they try it and don't like it, we don't push them to eat any more of it). There was a time they would have thrown a fit like Bitty did.

Oddly enough, the next day when I was eating leftovers, Bitty decided the roast didn't look so bad after all and wanted to try some of mine. I was more than happy to share with him, and he ate over half of my roast :). He even tried a bite of potato and you should have seen his face - all scrunched up like it was awful but he didn't spit it out, he actually ate it (another shocker!). I couldn't get him to try any carrots - maybe next time :).

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Debbie @ Three Weddings on July 4, 2009 at 8:21 AM said...

We have mealtime battles, too. I hate them. We often have to force Peanut to take a bite before she'll start eating. Obviously this is not the right solution for you and I know many would think us horrible parents if they saw it, but she just needs that jump start sometimes. Like you, all we want is one bite. If she likes it, she'll keep eating and if she doesn't we no longer push it.

Raising children with special needs certainly has it's own set of rules and you can't always follow the conventional wisdom.

I'm glad to hear he ate the roast! Hopefully next time he will without fussing.

Floortime Lite Mama on July 4, 2009 at 12:14 PM said...

omg how cute e is - its so awesome D that you take the effort to figure it out !!!
And Yayyyyy for trying new foods

UPrinting on July 7, 2009 at 2:47 AM said...

Aww... sometimes we really can't avoid getting frustrated with children. They are kids who always want to have it their way. Eventually, everything is going to be okay. :)

OneProudGrandma said...

For some reason as I was reading this I kept thinking of peas and green beans. Not sure why....... :)


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I'm a mom of three boys on the autism spectrum, 11-yr-old identical twins and a 7-yr-old. My husband is a SAHD.


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