My husband's side of the family had a reunion yesterday at a natural springs resort.
There were some family members in attendance who live several hours away, and I was anxious to "show off" my children to them - especially Little Guy, as they have not seen him very often.
Unfortunately, things did not go as I had hoped. This is how Little Guy spent most of the day:.....running away and avoiding other people. That, and crying.
The few times when Little Guy was with everyone, he was very disregulated. He cried in the pool whenever he was accidentally splashed. He cried when the group played games and the noise level grew too loud. He cried when the other kids inadvertently bumped him. He cried when it was time too eat because we didn't have yogurt.
He cried a LOT.
And when he wasn't crying, he sought to distance himself from the crowd:
Maybe things didn't go according to plan, but it did give me the opportunity to explain Little Guy's diagnosis to some of the other relatives. They were very understanding and asked many questions about what Asperger's Syndrome is and how it affects our family.
I just hope that next time we get together, Little Guy won't be as anxious. I would really like the extended family members to see the endearing, funny, and intelligent personality that can be often obscured by the layers of his autistic spectrum disorder.
But it's comforting to know our family is prepared to accept Little Guy - no matter what side is showing itself.