It all started with a birthday party. A party that wasn’t about him. With children that weren’t his friends. With gifts that didn’t belong to him. With a bedroom with small spaces to hide in to regroup.
It moved into a week with an uncle he’s only met twice before in his life. Getting acquainted and reacquainted with family. Celebrating a birthday again. A birthday that wasn’t about him. With gifts that didn’t belong to him.
It moved into a weekend where his mommy was off of work for awhile. Days with a grandma that he’s only met three times before in his life. Getting acquainted and reacquainted with family. Avoiding an Easter egg hunt because it meant leaving the house and entering the unknown. Going to church on Easter where he’s expected to be quiet and sit still because that’s what good Catholics do. Overwhelmed by Easter gifts that did belong to him. Quiet time to play and regroup.
It moved into a few days where he had to leave the house to go to the zoo to walk around when he didn’t want to leave the house and go into the unknown. Where he went to therapy and didn’t want to do his group therapy because he couldn’t handle being around more people. Going out to dinner to toast an aunt that died last year and having the advantage of eating tacos.
It moved into several days where he was pulled out of bed in the wee hours of the morning to get dressed and get into a car to take the grandma he doesn’t know very well to the airport. To going to the cabin where there are no “people” and only outside bliss. Days that started early, had naps in the middle and ended late. A schedule that was not like anything that resembled “normal”.
It moved into packing the car. Taking the uncle he was just getting to know back to the airport. Going home to things that are normal, things that are his. To not having to leave the house for an entire day so that he could prepare himself to return to the real world.
It ended with his mommy going back to work. Him going back to school. Routine, structure and normalcy returning to his life.