Last night, I had a solstice gift. To understand how cool this way, you have to understand that life for Chet is very "orderly." Regimented and not likely to change would be more accurate, but orderly sounds better. For instance, he has to eat at the same time. He literally can not tolerate a deviation of more than 15 minutes. Offering snacks is not a solution. Last night my wife and Rob were late coming home from a cleaning gig and supper could not be served till 5:00. I fed Chet at his usual time and he was content to eat with just my puttering in the kitchen for company. Every night when he comes down to supper he brings his PJ's and towel. He takes his shower right after supper. It does not matter if the Pope stopped in to visit. Chet will have his shower at his designated time and walk past and happily wave good night.
His emotions are prone to spinning out of control and so the things in his life that he can control, he has always done with a fierce intensity. By acceding to this need, he ihas become slightly less frantic about it. But it means that by 5:30 or so, he is in his room for the night and not seen again till morning. I get that he needs this. Nights have always been harder for him. For some reason he has always been prone to ramping up then and is dramatically more sensitive to stimuli of any form.
But last night, out of the blue, he came downstairs about 5:30 with a deck of cards. He wanted to know if the rest of the kids wanted to play Uno. They were thrilled and in moments, while I did the dishes, there were 4 kids by the Yule tree playiing Uno. It was truly a solstice miracle for me. I listened to the laughter and my heart was light.