I'm not one to use my kids as guinea pigs in some kind of science experiment, but I do like to observe their reactions from time to time to events that occur in their lives.
Vacations away from home always bring out a new side to everyone. I don't think anyone likes change, even when it's temporary.
The boys are supercharged at the moment. They are bored at the same time. Who wouldn't be with all this driving. I am finding myself refereeing much more than usual and I anticipated this. I know what I signed up for with this trip.
It's been interesting watching Jared. The farther we get away from home and he is away from his bed, the more autistic behaviors I see. He is perseverating far more. His stimming behaviors are far more apparent than usual. He is making funny sounds over and over. He can't sit still to save his life.
Jordan was up to his eyeballs, frustrated by all this and becoming quite mean to Jared. I finally had a chance to sit with him and explain what was going on. It's hard on the siblings. You don't want to be embarrassed and ashamed of your brother, but you are. When public displays present themselves, it's the siblings that desperately want it to end. It's harder when your brother "looks" totally normal. I think the boys would feel better if Jared had a more "visible" disability. I know they are trying their best though and it's not easy for them. I know they wish they didn't feel that way.
For me it's eye opening to see Jared outside of the home environment. I experienced this when we went to the zoo as well. When we hear how he is at school, our first thought is that we don't really see that in the home. I take for granted the safety of our home to him. It's the world that I really need to prepare him for. It's scary, unpredictable, and lacking security for a person who needs safety, trust, and order to function anywhere close to "normal."
I watch the reactions of other people. Mostly at this point it's like they don't know what he is doing, but it's odd and he's cute. At times they look at me like I don't have enough control over him. For me, I don't care. For him, it kills me.
It kills me for my other boys too. I want them to be proud of each other. I want them to defend and care for each other. I get that they are children and this is a work in progress that is a lifelong thing. I get that there is a certain amount of animosity towards Jared for the embarrassment they feel often and for the time with Sean and I that gets taken away from them. I get all that.
I think they have a right to feel all that they do. I just wish it didn't have to be so hard.