Wednesday, 30 September 2009

Back on track

Thank you all for your concern and encouraging
comments. It means a lot to me, to know that from
a far someone cares.

Cirwen recovered over the weekend after the incident
and decided to travel to school on her own following
Monday. She is very cautious and so far there was no
problems on the road. She's happy and confident again.

Yesterday, however, something happened out of ordinary
and she panicked. She went to the bus stop as usual. She
was on time, yet two buses didn't stop. (Here's the public
transport in UK... it does happen a lot. Often for no reason,
sometimes, because the bus is full).
Cirwen called me panicking, that she will be late and sent
to the "duty room", which apparently is horrible. She
couldn't understand why it happened, she thought that one
of the drivers "glared at her angrily". She was a mess.
It took me a good few minutes to explain to her, that she
still had to wait for another bus, which WOULD stop, that
these things happen and we can't really help it. I also
promised her I would call the school and explain why she
was late. She calmed down and agreed she would take the
next bus and walk the rest of the way as fast as she could.
As a result, Cirwen stood on that bus stop for 20 minutes...
and still was at school on time. She called again with relief
to let me know.

Such a small change of routine. Unpredictable incident.
I knew it happens, yet I forgot to warn her that British
drivers sometimes miss a stop, make mistakes or just
cannot take another person on board.

For me, something like this is just another annoying fact
of life. For Cirwen, it was confusion and fear. We both learn
from situations like that.

Cirwen knows, she can always call me for advice. I will have
to consider all the possible odds, to prepare her for anything
what can happen when she will start to venture further into the world.
That's a lot to predict. I won't be able to warn her of everything.
I guess, time will show. Many, many panicky calls to come...

Friday, 18 September 2009

... And the fall

I spoke too soon. I have received a call from
Cirwen this afternoon. She was hit by a car
while crossing the road with her two friends.

The driver "didn't see them running..."
He didn't bother to wait for me to get there
as well.

Cirwen was hit in a leg, but so far not even a bruise.
Luckily, the car was not moving fast and stopped
in time just about clipping her side.

She was scared, shocked, and trembling when
I finally got there. Her friends waited with her.
All they could say, the driver was acting strange
and said he was a police worker. I don't think
he was telling the truth, otherwise, he would stay
to confront me. If he didn't drive fast, how come
he didn't see the three girls?!

All I know now, I have a few more white hairs
on my head, and many, many months of work
with Cirwen on independence, travelling to
school and all the rest might have gone to waste.
We'll see. She has weekend to get over it, but
today she asked if I could come with her on Monday.
All that, because of one dodgy driver...


I am soo proud!
I expected to accompany Cirwen to and from school
at least till the end of this month. How wrong I was!

We are just two weeks into the school year and my
brave girl has already come back home on her own

Yesterday, she asked if she could go to school alone.
I went through the landmarks, armed her in her
mobile phone in case of emergency ... armed myself
in patience ... and off she went.

It was the longest few hours of the morning ever.
Around 9.30am I stopped worrying. She didn't call
me in distress, and the school didn't call me to ask
why she didn't attend the lessons. Guessed then she'd
made it.

I realise now, that I should give Cirwen more credit
than I usually do. She is capable of so much more
than I let her. I suppose because of Cirwen's autistic
nature, my judgement is often biased. Based not only
on experience first hand, but also other parents' stories
I fear. I became overprotective and maybe create
the atmosphere, where she feels threatened by the
world more than she should?

It is so hard though, to find the golden middle. To find
the point where common sense and healthy parenting
do not cross the boundary towards crippling love, putting
the child in the glass jar. Like The Little Prince, I have to
let my Rose grow no matter the weather. She'll survive.

Tuesday, 8 September 2009

Busy, nervous and excited

It's been a busy several days.
Preparation to the new school year in the new

Shoes, uniform, accessories... shopping, planning
and my nervousness, Cirwen's excitement.

She started school on the 3rd of September, walked
proudly in her black school blazer, white shirt and
purple tie. God, she looked so grown up!

It's been a few days since the start. She is loving
her new school, all they do even the homework
given on their first day.

I am less and less nervous and stressed. Although
it's just the beginning and we have to get used to
travel by public bus.

After her induction days and these few recent trips,
we play the game on the bus. She has to tell me where
to get off or where we are, because I can't remember.
This way she learns to look for landmarks to navigate
her way. She now is confident on the way back, as
it is easy to spot remarkable building of the local pub.
However, she still has difficulty with the way to school.
Unfortunately, the bus stop is in the residential area,
where houses are pretty much all the same... She has to
remember which way and how many turns the bus does
before the stop. I hope it will be good few weeks, before
she gets the drift. Till then, I'm with her.