You know them days, the ones where you wish that you hadn’t removed yourself from under your duvet!
Ours started at 3am. Dinky woke me up as she scared herself by knocking her 2 foot dancing Simba on the floor. so then began the duvet battle, and then that age old question of how do they always manage to connect the coldest parts of their bodies to the warmest part of yours… while they are sleeping!
So 7 am comes and I can not keep her in my bed any longer. She goes off to terrorize the guinea pigs, so I call her in and play some tickle and rough play games with her. (Then she fell off my bed onto the duvet and pillows that ended up down there…. and I laughed… lots, which she was NOT happy about it!). Eventually we got up and she had breakfast, and because I told her that we had to get ready to out to the aquarium (which she asked for… and pronounced correctly!), she ate slower, and we were not ready to go out until near on 10 am.
So we have ear defenders, fiddle toys (which we have changed 5 times), a seahorse toy, the Ipad and various snacks. I also saw her with my old camera, so let her take one of the guinea pig, so let her take it to take photos of our day out.
We hadn’t got past the end of our road when Dinky saw the dogs that live nearby. She got the camera out and took pictures of them, then stroked them, and wanted to play, but I told her we were going to see lots of animals, and the dogs were on their way home.
We got to the train station to find that the trains were all delayed. Having brought the tickets online the day before I was pretty annoyed (not that I could have changed the plan on Dinky).
First train, all good, there was lots of noise at the station waiting for the second, so Dinky put her ear defenders on. She also had her badge which says ‘may be experiencing some special needs technical difficulties’ on her at the time. When the train rocked up it was packed beyond belief. We found a carriage that wasn’t as busy but there were no seats. Dinky was getting agitated and sat on the floor. We ironically were in the priority seats section. After she was on the floor for a good 10 minutes she wanted her ipad out and but I had to say no. Eventually I gave in and do something I have never done. I got Dinky’s disabled persons railcard out and asked someone to move for her, which they did.
So she had her ipad out and was happy, although I could see her getting agitated, she had taken the ear defenders off and there was a baby crying nearby.
When we got off to get the last train (which we wouldn’t have done if not for the delays and cancellations), she went into meltdown, the station was packed, there was tannoy announcements, she wouldn’t put the ear defenders back on. I tried to distract her, but nothing. She was shouting and screaming and hitting. When she finally started moving again she was angry, she was screaming “get away from me, don’t touch me!”. Which is fine, but in central London, with over cautious security it really wasn’t the time. One of them came over to ask her if she was ok, to which I replied “she is under assessment for an autism spectrum disorder, she will be fine again soon, but you are NOT helping.” He gave us some distance as she kicked out at him. I managed to calm her, to find she was hungry to add to the other sensory bombardment. She happily walked with me after a cuddle, and the guy couldn’t believe his eyes… Autism spectrum awareness for him (and for all those muppets staring at us!)
So we got the last train and someone read her badge and jumped up and let her sit down. which was nice. We made it to south bank. We walked along, and now dinky was getting excited, she wanted to see the turtles and the penguins. So she was almost pulling me along by the wrist reins as soon as she saw the sign that was on the picture I showed her. At the entrance I was looking for the priority entrance and dinky ran through a gap, leading me to bump in to a man at the entrance as I tried to pull her back this is the conversation
Me: so sorr…
Man: go on, go first if it is that important to you, but in this country we queue!
Me: I am sorry, I was pulled into you as I am attached to my 5 year old on wrist reins.
Man: You fool, the queue is there.. I have paid for priority access
Me: Well, we also have priority tickets, because my daughter cant handle queues. Oh and DONT CALL ME A FOOL!
Man: no go on, you go.
Dinky just wanted to run in, so I went past him. I would have gone after him, but he wanted to look big in front of his partner and kids, fine, but I was going to take his offer, however rhetorical his offer was!
To his utter smugness, the person opened another line and he walked past us and smiled. I smiled back as his horrified wife pointed out Dinky’s badge.
I hate muppets like that.
So we got in and Dinky gets her camera out. I must admit she loved taking pictures. We looked at all the fish and most people were ok with her charging around with me attached and being pulled along with her. She touched a star fish, spotted the sea creatures we mentioned on the bus, she loved the turtles and the penguins. Actually she was captivated by the penguins, who seemed as if they were preforming for the kids as they kept jumping in and out of the water. Both Dinky and a 19 month old were hysterical every time they saw one dive in. It was one of those moments that got me. She was next to kids her size, and while they enjoyed it, they were able to contain themselves. However she was more along the containment levels of a toddler. Which obviously, is just her, but hits you unawares.
We saw the sharks, and the tank with nemo and dory. (There will be a whole generation that just call clownfish nemo!) We saw piranhas, jelly fish, seahorses (to which Dinky was showing them her pink seahorse squidgy toy and making odd noises she believed were sea horse noises), and cat fish. She was taking pictures and having fun. The shop was manic and so was Dinky. I said she could have one thing, if it was a packet it counted as one thing even if there is more inside (we have had this literal issue before!). First she picked up a teddy penguin, and a teddy turtle, she decided the turtle was cuter, so put down the penguin, then found other toys, and picked up the foam swords, and then a shark grabber that normally breaks in 5 minutes, then she found the thing… She found a bag of plastic toys, a shark, jelly fish, turtle, penguin, ect ect. I was happy too, it went from £18 down to £5… not complaining!
She was not happy as I had to direct her away from the glass breakables and toward the tills.
We went for lunch, and then she saw a mr bean performer so we watched him and other performers for a while. Then we went to the park near the London eye.
She did really well.
We got the first train fine, again the second train is where we encountered the next major meltdown. She was getting silly on the platform, and I had to lift her onto the train (I would have waited but the next one wasn’t for an hour). She then wouldn’t sit down. That was it, screaming, throwing herself around, hitting me… at first I got some dirty looks, however when her bag came off and the guy could see her badge he gave me a reassuring smile, which was better than his scowls. The poor gentleman on the opposite side of the table didn’t even glance in our direction. She got under the table and was banging her head on the table, she was screaming a high pitched scream and began biting. Eventually she calmed enough to sit next to me.
She wanted a drink and something to eat.
She lay on my lap and was quiet until we got off. Then she was really good. We had to stop off in asda on the way home to get snacks for her trip to chessington with her group tomorrow, she was as good as gold.
We got a ccab back as she was adamant she was going swimming, as it was Wednesday.
So We came back for an hour to have dinner and get her swimming stuff before heading out of the door. We got there ok, she got dressed ok. She messed about mext to the pool, but nothing major. I went up and from up the top it looked like she wouldn’t use a float unless the teacher did, but then the instructor was doing lots of swimming today. As it turned out Dinky was the teacher today! Which was brilliant, they had been reading up on PDA!
Dinky pretended to be asleep when she got out of the pool, but did come with me, was a little manic running around the showers. However she let me get her dressed without an issue! First time since the last holidays!
I got her a treat, and she refused to try my jelly as she said “too wobbly”. It was a little more difficult getting home, but nothing major. She let me dress her for bed and went up ok.
Tomorrow, she is off to chessington, which should be good for her!