Although my life is often filled with instances like the one from last post, there are moments of progress with Little Guy. Good moments that fill me with hope and give cause for celebration.
Something good happened recently while we were at the neighborhood park. We'd arrived hoping to find some of Little Guy's friends, but there was no one we knew. Little Guy hung out by the splash pad, looking at the other kids longingly. He finally told me he wished he had someone to play with, so I encouraged him to find some friends.
He was hesitant at first, but then began approaching some of the other youngsters. I watched, intrigued, wondering what Little Guy would do. His initial overtures were rebuffed because of his inability to realize the importance of eye contact in socialization; most of his efforts were made when the other kids' heads were turned or they were busy doing other things.
"Nobody wants to be my friend," he said in discouragement, approaching the bench where I sat. I assured him that wasn't true, and offered new suggestions for him to try. Little Guy headed out once again, but I could tell he was skeptical. He zeroed in on a couple of kids playing on the grass behind me, approaching them cautiously.
They were busily jumping over a small, covered PVC pipe sticking up out of the grass and obviously having a great time. Little Guy tried to engage one of them, but again chose an inopportune way and time. The child failed to recognize his overtures, and my son was on the brink of failure again. He glanced my way, but instead of running to me for help, he studied the situation for a moment before coming up with his own solution.
Without saying a word, Little Guy walked over to the pipe and stood on it. Suddenly, he toppled off while waving his arms and legs, having pretended to "slip". The other kids started laughing, then eagerly jumped in to play the new game. Little Guy was soon talking and engaging with his "friends", and I was so proud of him for figuring out - entirely on his own - how to overcome his social dilemma.
Here's to progress!