The weather around here has either been super rainy or super beautiful...not much in between.I'll take that! We have been spending a LOT of time outdoors already this year, and once the heat hit the 80s....the pool went up! But do you know how hard it is to explain to an autistic four year-old that we have to WAIT for the pool water to warm up & the chemicals to do their job? Why is it different from a bath? Oooo....Ethan was NOT happy about waiting. So, I pulled out last year's sprinkler....still in it's box.
And that's fine. Honestly, when it comes to picking my battles, making him run through the sprinkler is very low on my list. Can I get an amen?
However, I was a bit nervous myself getting out the sprinkler. Ethan was already having some "waiting" issues & his anxiety was already rising. Should I risk the sprinkler? Um.....YEAH! Lately, he has been letting me use our shower head to rinse him off after his bath instead of using a big cup to fill & dump and fill & dump and fill & dump...the shower head is so much easier when you have a child that is already about 4 feet tall! And the sprinkler is kind of like a shower head, right? Well, that's what I told Ethan anyway.
Well, we got it out, and he just watched & studied....as he usually does at something new. I ran through it, then I made Dad run through it, then we told Ethan to run through it just like we did. He took the WIDEST path AROUND the sprinkler....but he did it!!!! Eventually, he was running through it like a pro!
Soon, Ethan didn't need us to go with him through the sprinkler anymore. He was doing it on his own, and he was SOAKED! It was soooo great to watch him giggle & run & laugh & enjoy the cool water on a hot day. And he didn't mention the pool again.
Super cool Dad even put Ethan's big trampoline over top of the sprinkler so Ethan could jump & be cool. Oh man.....I think that trick won him Dad of the Year in Ethan's book! He played with that sprinkler for over an HOUR!!! It was a great sign of how our summer seems to be shaping up! I'm so proud of my boy!
Today, after picking Ethan up from Easter Seals & driving him to his afternoon preschool, he asked me what we were going to do after school today. I told him that it might be warm enough for us to get in the pool or we could play in the sprinkler some more. Guess what Ethan picked? Yep....the sprinkler!
It's moments like that that I pause and thank God for how he made Ethan. If Ethan were a "typical developing" child, I think I would take these moments for granted. Kids playing in the sprinkler? That's not a big deal. But in our home, it is. It is a really big deal.
Thank you God for these signs of growth....for these miracles in Ethan's life. I'm so thankful that I can recognize them & celebrate them with you, Father. Look at our boy grow!