I digress, on to today. We have been doing mommy and me gymnastics at our local YMCA for a couple weeks now. He does pretty well, aside from getting overstimulated and running around in between activities. There is also 'open gym' on the other half of the gym. Aidan is a classic sensory seeker in every singe way. If you look at a list of 'red flags' Aidan does every single seeking behavior on the list. The only things that he avoids are water (especially on his head) and noise he can't see the source of. So, the open gym basketball has been a hurdle. It's not like I can put his ear protection headphones on, and expect him to do gymnastics. We've been lucky the first 2 weeks, there weren't too many people playing. Today there were around 10 guys playing and they were really into it and loud. I did everything in my power to help him calm down. I did his brushing, and put his vest on, and we got on with it. It takes the vest a few minutes to really get him calm, and that's fine. He didn't want to stretch, but who can really expect a 2 year old to sit and stretch like a big kid? He needed comforting and time, so I hugged him, and talked to him, and waited for them to start the actual class. I tried to get him to do the activity that they were doing, jumping off the spring board onto a big fluffy mat. Now, Aidan still hasn't mastered jumping. He can bounce like Tigger until the cows come home, he just hasn't gotten the coordination of actually jumping. Not a big deal. He won't be 2 for another 2 weeks. He went and bounced, and the coaches help him get up to the big mat. We were waiting for his turn again, and he was running and crawling around, trying to get himself calmed down and centered. That's what he does, and I'm not going to stop him from trying to make himself calm. I didn't see the harm in it, he wasn't bothering anyone, he wasn't running around where the other kids were doing things, he was just running and crawling and rolling on the floor, looking for as much sensory input he could find. After a minute one of the little girls came over and was running and crawling with him. Her mom came and picked her up and scolded her and told her not to 'act like that wild little boy' I was floored. I didn't say anything, because, well, if I had, it wouldn't have been very nice. I picked my beautiful, loving, amazing son up and hugged him tight and asked him if he wanted to go bye-bye. He looked at me and nodded his head and said yes. That was all I needed, We gathered our stuff, I put his shoes back on, and we left. On the way out, I made the decision to pull him out of the class. It may seem like a knee jerk reaction, but it really wasn't. I am my sons advocate. I have to be his voice when he can't be. I made the decision based on the open gym, and the noise level, that clearly overstimulates him. I'm not going to lie, some of it was to shield him from prejudice, and intolerance, and ignorance. I know that not everyone will agree with my decision to pull him, but it's my decision. We have so much coming up in the next few weeks as it is.
Anyway. I had to get that out. On to happier things. I'll have a much better update on Aidan and his therapies and such in a couple days. For now, think twice before you judge a child that you think is out of control. Think twice before you criticize a parent, thinking that they need to control their child. You have no idea the battles that go on in others lives. Think twice before you judge.