Sunday, December 05, 2010

I Gotta Get Out of Here

We were at the Barnes & Noble PTO Bookfair, a fundraiser for Aliza's school yesterday afternoon.  It was pretty busy with holiday shoppers.  I was working at the craft table, just thinking about forcing the boys to come have fun and put stickers on a bookmark, when AJ's fight-or-flight instinct kicked in and he headed for the first exit he could find -- the emergency exit.  The door states pretty plainly


but apparently all AJ saw was


so he did.

And the alarm did sound.  And it was another one of those times where everyone stops what they are doing and looks over, because of something one of my boys did.  I love that I am starting to compile a list of those moments.

(Another time was when we were at a party at Aliza's school and there were loud second graders and a lot of commotion everywhere, and Zack screamed one of those screams.  All the kids stopped talking and looked over at us, and later Aliza told me that embarrassed her.  I apparently didn't blog about that because I can't find it to link to it, so here it is.)

I looked up and AJ was running away from the door, probably partly out of shock from the loud sound, and partly to avoid being connected to it.  As if we didn't see him.  Mark sprinted to catch him, sort of a kneejerk reaction, but the damage was done by now.  So if you were in Barnes & Noble in Burnsville yesterday afternoon and heard the alarm going off -- that was my boy that triggered it.

I wonder how many other kids have opened that emergency door.  I wonder how many of them were autistic.

I actually often fear that one of my boys will pull a fire alarm.

I was working at the gift-wrapping table with a lady who has two children with autism, and she was telling me her son who is now a senior in high school with a GPA of 3.9 was once one of those kids who stutters and repeats himself and bangs his head on things (reminding me lots of AJ, who has that nervous-stutter thing going on, now that he talks a bit) and when he was little she never would have dreamed that he'd be doing so well now, in high school.

And I teared up a bit while she talked about him (man, everything makes me cry lately), at the possibility that my boys could do the same thing......but of course that kid doesn't have Fragile X on top of autism.

Still it was really nice to hear that a child with behaviors just like my kids could blossom into a functional, really smart kid.

By the way, I admitted with no small amount of pride to everyone that that was MY BOY who opened the emergency exit. Those PTO moms aren't going to forget who I am any time soon!


Cortney said...

It happens. I'm a typically developing adult and I've set alarms off before because I'm lazy and like to lean on doors/walls/railings.

fragilemom said...

Yep, we had the same thing happen at McDonalds. Sometimes you just gotta say, "oh, well." :)


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