Just when Amber and I think that we are finally starting to figure out Kaitlyn just a little bit, she goes ahead and throws us a giant curve and we are left scratching our heads. That is exactly what happened to us yesterday.
This summer, we are sending Kaitlyn to a summer camp about 3 miles from our house at a local church. The first two weeks went wonderfully; they went to Doak Campbell Stadium for a tour, went bowling at FSU, did karate, and did a swimming test at a local pool (Kaitlyn easily passed her swimming test).
This week, in addition to the regular camp activities, the church is holding a Vacation Bible School. It alters the regular camp schedule some by basically splitting the day in half, with the VBS activities in the morning and the regular camp activities in the afternoon. If you have been following our adventure for any amount of time, you might be thinking here that the altered schedule would throw Kaitlyn for a loop, but it has not, thanks to us already having the camp calendar on the refrigerator for Kaitlyn to review (and she looks at it several times each day).
Part of the VBS includes all of the campers to wear the purple shirt that they were given Monday each day. Kaitlyn was wearing it when I got home Monday, and put it in with her dirty clothes like she is supposed to (a small victory in and of itself since usually her dirty clothes stay wherever they fall when she takes them off). I inquired as to whether or not she needed to wear the shirt any the rest of the week, but did not get a significant response one way or the other.
While I was at work yesterday, Amber emailed me to inform me that she read the email about VBS again, just to be sure whether or not Kaitlyn was supposed to wear her purple shirt. When she told me that Kaitlyn was, in fact, supposed to wear her purple shirt each day this week, we both began to prepare ourselves for the inevitable meltdown after camp. I mean, it had to be coming, right, since Kaitlyn did not wear the purple shirt like she was supposed to?
Wrong. When I got home from work, that was the first thing I asked Amber, and she told me that Kaitlyn barely even mentioned it, and certainly was not bothered by it. In fact, she happily reported that other kids were not wearing theirs either. Just to be safe, Amber had already put that shirt in the wash with some of Kaitlyn’s other clothes so that it would be ready to be worn today.
Kaitlyn decided that she did not want to wear the shirt today, either. Instead, she picked out a nice pink dress because she “wanted to look beautiful” for the singing they were doing at VBS today. Her choice of an outfit for today was not a battle we were willing to have this morning, so Kaitlyn looked as beautiful as she always does in the dress she picked out.
Amber and I should have known better than to think we were finally starting to figure out too much about Kaitlyn. Using past experience, we were convinced that something as major as not wearing her VBS shirt was sure to cause a major meltdown. We were happy to have missed the mark on that one. If there was a lesson in all of it, it is that Asperger’s will not let us become complacent and think we have a handle on Kaitlyn’s reactions to things and that she will continue to be unpredictable in her responses.