For the first time, Frances is going to a day camp that isn’t operated by people that she knows.
It’s a big change, but it’s not as big as it could have been–she is also attending with two of her cousins with whom she is very close.
On the first day, there were no tears at separation, but there were many reassuring words and hugs (when she permitted).
It’s a nature-oriented camp that involves activities such as canoeing every day. Pink Cup Dad and I both enjoy canoeing, and we’re happy that Frances is enjoying being on the water (and that she is so closely supervised).
She is surrounded by the outdoors: (animals, dense forestation) with lots of activity (hiking, canoeing, crafting).
She has also met a girl who seems to be very protective and friendly towards her and who enjoys horseback riding, too. This has allayed some of my own fears. This is her new “best friend”. (While she uses this term with everyone with whom she connects, I’ve no doubt that she means it when she says it.)
I signed her up back in February and indicated on the application that she has HF ASD. To my knowledge, she has not required one-to-one support at all and has managed well while just having her cousins there with her.
Next year, perhaps she’ll be ready to attend a camp without her cousins. I can see this happening for her.
She sometimes says “thank you” instead of “you’re welcome”, or she might say “you’re welcome” before the other person has a chance to thank her.
My adorable little girl is learning language and context, so I always tell her the correct response.
But, as I’ve mentioned recently, in these moments I get a chance to appreciate who she truly is just as she is.
I guess what I’m trying to say is that her struggle with pragmatic language often creates precious moments between us.
Frances has always loved to play with light and light-emitting objects. Here, she is holding a smallish green toy.
I’m glad to see that her recent interest in listening to music on her iPod isn’t interfering with her reading.
Frances has been playing with light since she was 9 months old. She would often grab my booklight and look at it with a big smile on her face!
Over the years, she has developed many different ways of interacting with light and light-emitting toys.
One thing that she still loves to do is to turn switches on and off very rapidly over and over again.
Like many behaviours, this one has disappeared and reappeared several times.
We discourage it (for safety reasons) with explanations and distractions–other means of light play available to her are harmless.
But as long as she can play with light, she is happy!
This was taken at the local children’s hospital (at which we spend so much of our time).
Frances was there to see her occupational therapist who has most recently helped Frances with having her hair brushed.
She’s playing at the touch-enabled light table. If we only had one of those!
Frances: Did you ever realize that we don’t see our own faces? We don’t know if mirrors are lying. We never know what we truly look like.
I just found this gem of a conversation. Frances had just turned four.
Frances: The ugly duckling is really a swan? The swan egg got accidentally into the duck nest? How could that have happened? That doesn’t make any sense…!