Two good things happened, and I didn't even notice the second one
I was all happy this weekend about one really good thing that happened that I didn't even notice a second, really, really good thing that happened.
The first thing was a new friend combined with a sleepover. Bright Eyes has a new 'best mate' at school, a little kid called B who is sweet and easy to get on with. One afternoon this week B turned up at our front door (we live in a tiny town where kids tend to roam a little) with a question. Two questions in fact.
"Is Bright Eyes there? Does he want to play?"
Talk about music to my ears. And Bright Eyes' response was even better.
"You bet I do!"
The two of them played for an hour and a half and I didn't feel a speck of that 'is he doing a good enough job at playing' stress that I KNOW all ASD parents feel.
The next step was for them to organise themselves a sleepover. They asked both sets of parents, found a good date and lo and behold, B turned up yesterday afternoon, all set for a good afternoon. And it was. Little brother and tiny sister also joined in the fun and there was a full scale game of hide and seek going on all over the house. Bright Eyes had a lot of fun being silly about 'the seventh planet in the Solar System' (let the reader understand) and again, I didn't feel any of that playdate stress that I've had so many times before.
We all went out to the local Christmas pantomime at the village hall after dinner, came home and went to bed. It was a good sleepover.
It wasn't until I got to church this morning and a lady who's shown a lot of interest in Bright Eyes said to me, "Wasn't it great about last night?"
I was confused. Did she know we'd had a sleepover? Had one of the kids told her already? It seemed odd. "Yeah, it went really well," I said. "They both went to sleep fine, no problems."
"Sleep?" she said. "I'm talking about the pantomime. Your whole family turned up in one outing! I was so pleased."
I looked at her, astounded. She was right. Our whole family had gone out to the pantomime. Every single one of us was there. There was no refusing from Bright Eyes, no staying home of one parent to look after him. We made it out and went home, all in one piece. Like Normal People.
And I hadn't even noticed.
"You're right," I said. "That's amazing." It took someone else to notice incredible progress in my own family and I'm so glad she told me. It gave me a warm hug of joy all morning.