For every positive experience, there is always a negative one.
Or that is what I have found.
Last night, we had a wonderful time out for tea with our friends. The hardest thing about going out is having to 'shadow' Ryley. The place we went for tea was great. It was a small country pub, and there was really nothing to worry about. But the problem is, I still feel like I always have to keep an eye on Ryley. He is more than able to wander around, follow the kids, sit at the table. But he rarely stays still. He is not able to communicate his needs, and he can't really join in with the other kids as they make up their own games to play. So, he is part of it all. But he isn't.
David had the 'night off' so to speak, given that it was his celebration. Usually we take it in turns, but he had a free pass to enjoy himself as much as he could. So, let's just say, I was very tired by the end of the night and felt like I had barely spoken to anyone! I did enjoy myself though. Even 5 minutes of conversation is..well you know..5 mins of conversation!!!!
Something really nice happened though. I happened to take my eyes off Ryley for 5 seconds (probably to engage in conversation!!) and then I noticed he had wandered over to a table full of footy players. I immediately jumped to my feet and bolted over, only to find them all giving him 'Hi Fives' and asking him how his day has been. With a bit of a lump in my throat, I smiled and felt really proud of Ryley for being able to just go and 'start a conversation' without caring what the response was. I often wonder who is more disabled by Ryley's disability...me or him?
So, Nhill Footy Club...you should feel really proud of yourselves, what a great bunch of blokes!
Today Ryley was in full whingeing mode so I finally had enough and decided to take Ryley shopping. On his own, just me and him. Braeden wanted to stay home and play with his playdough and colour in, so that turned out really well.
Unfortunately, the visit to Target didn't go that well. I decided to let Ryley walk. That was my first mistake.
At first he was excited and nearly falling over he was trying to walk so fast. Then when he realised that I wanted him to follow me...well that's when the trouble started! To cut a long story short, I ended up carrying him, and as much as he loved it, I nearly broke my back.
As we waited in line to pay, Ryley made his usual grunting noise (which means hurry the F up). Two ladies already being served made a point of turning around and staring at us.
Ryley then shrieked when someone walked past.
Same two ladies turned around and just stared and shook their heads.
Not such a good day for me today.
So I mumbled (not as loud as I could have): "What, you haven't ever met a child with a disability?". It didn't serve it's purpose really because only the lady in front of me heard and she shifted very uncomfortably as far away from me as she could.
Again, with the lump in my throat, I just held my head up and got Ryley to help me put our purchases on the counter.
I got back to the car and cried. Sometimes those negative experiences really get to me.
So I took Ryley to the park. I knew that if he was smiling and laughing, then I would be too.