Can you believe this year has flew past already? The hustle and bustle of the holiday season is right around the corner! November is always a time to be thankful for more reasons than one because I get to celebrate Jaden’s birthday. I can’t believe he’s a teenager now. Happy 13th Birthday to my AWESOME son, Jaden!! I love you Jaden and I’m blessed to be your mom!
While this is an exciting time of the year, there are those who may have mixed feelings at the anticipation of making holiday adjustments for our children on the spectrum. As I reflect on my own experience of past holidays and ALL it’s challenges here’s what I’ve learned –
Expect the unexpected! Children on the spectrum are used to routine and we have to make accommodations in our holiday planning. If taken out of their comfort zone due to unfamiliar places, faces, and foods, our children can become overwhelmed.
Take time to plan ahead by using some of these ideas:
- Dress comfortably! If you plan to take pictures or get dressed for dinner, carry a change of clothing.
- Pack your child’s favorite calming and self-regulatory toys and games.
- Keep food on hand that you know your child will enjoy. While you may enjoy the taste of turkey and stuffing, your child may find it unappealing.
- Don’t be afraid or embarrassed to inform the host that your child may not be able to sit for a long time, so he/she may want to get up and move around.
- Ask ahead of time if there will be a quiet place that your child can go to if he/she needs a break.
- Plan an exit strategy! You might have to leave earlier than expected.
As you plan for the upcoming holidays, I hope you will join us at our 4th Annual Celebration Beyond The Spectrum as LEGOLAND in Plymouth Meeting Mall! Register here
Let’s continue to create a world more aware and inclusive of autism! Wishing you a safe and happy holiday season!