"Why did I have to come?" Tommy grumbled beside me.
"You needed to get out of your cave. You can't spend all day in your room. You need to get out. You are not one of the kids in Flowers In The Attic," I responded. "Plus, Pinkie Pie and gang seems to be enjoying it." I gestured to the floor.
We were at Natalie's end of the year gymnastics program. Tommy was not amused. The tiny three-year-olds going across the balance beam didn't even get him to crack a smile.
"They aren't cute," he muttered.
In the middle of Natalie working on the bars, a baby behind us began to shriek, which almost sent Tommy into a meltdown. He cannot handle baby cries. He once told me it felt like glass going across his brain.
"Stop," Tommy went, clamping his hands over his ears. "Stop." He began to rock back and forth in his chair. I reminded him to breathe deeply. This helps him ward off the meltdowns. He did this and thankfully the baby quieted.
Tommy resumed watching, looking a little like Simon Cowell:
At one point he whispered, "This is as annoying as Dora the Explorer."
"Tommy. Remember when we discussed not saying whatever popped into your mind if it was rude?" I said. People with Autism have a habit of being very blunt. I understand how the mind works, but others do not. Someone who has never dealt with an Autistic kid before would assume that the kid was simply being rude.
He asked me if Natalie was finished every ten minutes.
Finally, I could say, "Yes. She's just getting her medal now."
All the kids get a medal, something that makes my husband roll his eyes. "In my day," he's been known to say, "all the kids did NOT get a trophy." But this is just a cute little program where the kids can show off the skills they learned all year.
Natalie is moving to Rec Gym 3 because she's been improving. She actually was invited onto the gymnastics team, but with Tom's schedule I didn't think we could handle it. Family time is more important to us since Tom's schedule can get insane. However, if Natalie really wants to do the team next year, we'd see what we could do. As of now, Natalie was happy enough to just move up a class.