Autism, again. Just when you think everything is fine, you have that dose of reality, that you are on a different page.
You get used to meltdowns, you learn to look what’s causing them. You learn to live with disturbed sleep, ok, I don’t think I’ll ever learn that! You learn that there will be days, weeks or even months of the same food choices, then the same day, week or month that food will be non exsistant, as if it’s never been in the house before.
Your celebrate every little milestone. Every new sound, every new food, even if it’s just touching said food! Every new place, every little thing. To Z those little things that others take for granted are huge. 
You kinda come to terms with the ‘he may never’, you see other children with autism, and see the progress and you think there’s hope. You learn that as bad as you may think you have it, others have it worse. 
Today, today the reality check was when we met the girls for food before school. Z has grown up with the girls! For the last two years the girls have been in his life. Soft play, play dates, parks. We went to McDonald’s. Z likes fries, but we don’t normally sit in, this was new. He handled it well, plus we didn’t take his iPad. He had to lay down, he ate a few fries and kept laying down.  The girls sat, they chatted away like little adults, they laughed, they we friends. Z was oblivious they were even there.  He played with his balloon, tried getting E’s off her. It was that part that this could be life, this could be us forever. Not the playing with balloons in McDonald’s part, ok that may happen too!   The girls will go on and be a group of friends and Z well where will he go? This I know is normal, but when will the girls start noticing Z is different? E already asks why don’t Z talk, when he’s babbling away, what did he say. When will it be oh look there’s Z the strange one who don’t talk to us and play with us? 
Yet, when we go to the autism groups, Z isn’t different, he’s the same. I don’t think the other kids think to themselves why don’t Z speak, because some don’t them selves.  They don’t notice, they don’t judge, they all just carry on doing what they are doing. They accept. 
It’s like a different environment all together. Yes, we can go out with the two groups, we may never fit in with any of them! Don’t get me wrong the girls are amazing, they are supportive, and protective of Z, and are always there. But they don’t get it, and they’ll never get it. Where as the autism girls do. I’m not saying my group of girls will ever judge, coz they don’t like I said they are amazing! The autism group understand the need for laying down, sitting under the table, the need for an iPad. The may even have to get out quickly. 
It’s nice to hear others say, no don’t eat that, get up, it’s ok it’s only the dryer and what ever else most of the parents have said! 
I’m lucky I have been given the chance to have both set of amazing group of people.  I’m lucky I’ve been given Z, he’s taught me many things. Most of all not to judge anyone. That screaming child in the supermarket could be just like Z and I know for one that Z isn’t naughty! 
We visited pets at home before food, impressed as Z is happy to go in here and look at the animals! 

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