Long Vacations and Autism – Part Three
The lows and highs of a long trip
During our 27-day vacation, my son had a few lows, but many highs.
What were some positive memorable moments?
One issue with my son is his occasional need to move his body.
It explained the need for more car breaks than typical kids need.
My son is not much of a climber, but he does pace (and hand shake) and ride a Razor scooter.
When I traveled with my son for twelve days last year, we rented a car for the entire trip.
This year, we drove across the country in a rented car, but flew home from Boston.
The scooter challenge
This left an interesting challenge for me because last year it was easy to simply bring my son’s scooter with us. No need to try to get it on an airplane.
No such luck this year.
In the spring, I began to think about how to handle the whole scooter issue.
Around the same time, I noticed that my son’s scooter was getting a bit ragged. I even had to fix it once or twice.
Why a scooter?
My son uses a Razor scooter to help regulate his body. We’ve gone through a few of them over the years.
It used to be a trampoline, but now he’s set on the scooter.
Putting together the plan
I came up with a solution that would benefit our summer vacation plans.
Instead of letting this scooter fall apart and simply replace it like I’d done in the past, I put it away and bought a new one “early.”
After that, when summer hit, I took the old one on vacation.
Of course, I had to hope that it wouldn’t fall apart during our 27-days away.
Luckily, it didn’t.
What did we do?
On our last day, we found a Goodwill on the way to the Boston airport and donated the scooter.
For an entire, long vacation, my son got his usual sensory break with his preferred item, a Razor scooter.
And, when we were done with the vacation, away it went.
Were they any other “highs” for our son on this trip?
1. My son is still infatuated with dogs, and he met plenty on this vacation.
2. He went to five baseball games on the trip.
3. My son did things with three cousins, two uncles, and one aunt.
4. He got to meet friends of mine he had never met before.
5. Mountains are one of his favorite things. He saw plenty of mountains.
6. He swam in the Atlantic Ocean in Atlantic City for three hours. I couldn’t get him out. He fell in love with crashing into the waves. (He reminded me of myself at that age.)
An incredibly proud moment came on a day when my brother and his family met us at a park in Upstate New York. This park features a walk along a stream (complete with small waterfalls).
The hike is meant for visitors to walk in the stream and “swim” in the falls.
A new experience
This was a brand new experience for my son. He had been in many parks before, but never one quite like this.
One challenge that even I had trouble with was the water was…cold. So cold that I only jumped in for a minute or two. I got right out.
My son observed his uncle and his cousin get into the cold water at the falls. He wanted to try it.
My son did it.
He did it his way… he backed into the water—very slowly—but in he went.
This experience became yet another time when my son amazed me.
I never would have guessed that he would plunge into this type of experience. “Plunge” into cold water running down a falls.
What a fantastic experience for my son.
Here is a family travel and autism site that may be helpful:
This was Long Vacations and Autism – Part Three. In my next blog, Long Vacations and Autism – Part Four, I’ll wrap up my experience with my son with autism on this 27-day vacation.
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