One of the questions I hear the most when I tell people about Kaitlyn’s Asperger’s is “what is that?” While I think I do an adequate job in answering, I often realize afterwards that there has to be an easier way. Amber forwarded something to me the other day that may just help, so I am going to try to frame my explanation using what she sent me.
Advanced vocabulary. One thing that amazes me daily is Kaitlyn’s grasp of the English language. She can hear a word once and use it in the proper context going forward.
Sensitive to criticism. The smallest bit of unwanted advice/criticism can lead to a gigantic meltdown. We work really hard to work with Kaitlyn to make sure that she has appropriate reactions to things.
Particular topic obsession. When she sets her mind on something, there is no swaying her. Whether it is a birthday party we missed because we were out of town, or wanting to talk to Tinkerbell, once her mind is made up, all bets are off.
Endless talking. Needs no explanation. Who knew that a 4 year old had so much to say?
Rigid. Without a doubt, Kaitlyn is stuck in her routines. The same way to school every day, sit on the same letter, K, in class every day. Once she establishes her comfortable routine, it is difficult to break.
Gifted. I would say that her vast vocabulary has probably made her more gifted than some. And, like her mother, she loves working on puzzles, challenging herself to think more.
Easily distressed. This rears its head most often when we break from routine. We often tell Kaitlyn well in advance of any changes to her schedule, and it seems to work…most of the time.
Restless and fidgety. Kaitlyn is a constant ball of energy, and getting her to sit in one place for more than a minute at a time is difficult. She is dropped off at school around 8 every morning, and is running around the second we get there.
Socially challenged. Kaitlyn has trouble in social settings and knowing what she is supposed to do around other kids. She is well-behaved and disciplined, but just has trouble in meshing well with other kids. She does her best, though, and we are proud of her for it.
Kaitlyn provides as a daily education, and we love her for it. Each day is an adventure, and we are blessed and fortunate to have such a wonderful little girl. She will have plenty of obstacles to face in her life, but I am confident that Amber and I will be prepared and have her prepared for anything that comes her way. I have already learned a ton about myself in the short period of time that we have been parents of an aspie.