Sunday 30 December 2012

Dealing with Crankies

It's been over a week since we had our regular routine and I am dealing with two very cranky kids now.

I'm pleased we made it through the holidays without these kinds of meltdowns but now I'm facing the whiny guns and tantrum blasts.

It doesn't help that Dave had an overnight maintenance window and is also fighting some cranky tendencies.  I'm guilty of a little more snap myself, too.

I'm trying to be gentle with everyone and not compound my irritation with guilt.  It's easier said than done but the reminder keeps me pointed in the right direction, even if I don't make progress.

Part of the challenge is that I can't use my usual techniques for dealing with crankiness.  I can't put Nathan down for a nap since Alex won't settle and the noise keeps Nathan awake.  I can't take Alex out for a bus ride because I'm on my own and Nathan is too easily upset to risk being stranded at a bus stop far from home.

Unfortunately, I think this is just one of those situations we're going to have to ride through and hope it's not a sign of something else creeping up.  (My sister was sick over the holidays so I'm wondering if the family is going to come down with her bug.)

For now, I'll do what I can preventatively.  Make sure everyone eats frequently, keep demands low, ensure the highly-desirable toys are kept out of sight to avoid ownership fights.

I'm sure everyone goes through this with kids at the holidays.  And that's one of the deals with autism, often you're not dealing with an impossibly unique situation but your tool box is so limited that ordinary situations become impossible.  Like trying to build a house without a saw or nails.  It can be done, but it's a lot more time-consuming and frustrating.

Ah well, only 7 more days until school starts again.  And yes, now I'm counting.

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