Friday night, the Autism Society of Southeastern Wisconsin (ASSEW) held a member's event at Cool Waters - an outdoor family aquatic park in West Allis. The park was closed to everyone except families with autistic children and the whole night was just such a wonderful experience. I knew it was going to be a memorable night when I didn't even have to worry about checking in because the event coordinators recognized me from another event I attended.
We were differently prepared for this outing. Cristian took a nap, which is very odd for him. We kept using the outing as an incentive for being a good boy. As my husband told me, we're still working on a learning curve. Each and every time we go out with him we are learning and growing as parents as much as he is growing and learning.
We learned that going down slides, much like life, can be so much fun...
...or it might surprise you a little...
We learned that trying new things isn't that bad after all! (Next step is the shower!)
Lastly, we learned that no matter how bad the bad is that the good makes you forget all about it!
The weather was a bit chilly and that was the only thing that cut our outing short. There were so many smiles and laughs and such a sense of understanding that it was overwhelming. Instead of dirty looks, pointing and snickers there were empathetic nods and words of encouragement. The environment was so positive and so welcoming that we were truly excited to hear about two other events coming up at places we frequent - Betty Brinn Children's Museum and Kids in Motion.
As we were leaving, I had a wonderful chat with one of the ASSEW coordinators who also recognized my past attempts at a support group and my appearance on a local morning show.
It was nice to know that even though the support group didn't work out that there are plenty of opportunities for me to work with this wonderful organization in the future. Without organizations like ASSEW, things would be a lot more difficult for parents like Blake and I.
Friday became one of those days that as a parent you will never forget. You take all of the mental snapshots you can of those moments you can only pray your children remember as well. Lucky for me, I have a husband who takes pictures like they are going out of style and is apparently training our son to do the same.
|Friday was also CJ's first trip to the zoo!|
Until the next mani, stay puzzled and polished!