Sunday, May 4, 2014

Hello Autism!

It has been a wild day.  Rob was needing to be at church early as the Youth Group were doing the service. So we had to leave our city by 8:30 to be there for 9:00 a.m.  No worries, I got the tribe up, breakfasted and out the door.  I did notice that Chet declined his customary donut from Dunkins but I figured it was because we left significantly earlier than usual.

We got to church and I engaged the youngers in a game of Yahtzee to pass the time.  Chet began opening windows in the sanctuary, saying it was stuffy in there.  I checked with someone else (because I am pretty much always cold) and they agreed, so we left the fresh breezes coming in.

Service began. I sit up front with KC and Lissa. Rob sat with the youth group. Chet always sits in the back in a specific chair that is most comfortable for him.  Part way through the service I am suddenly summoned out of the sanctuary.  Chet had felt dizzy, gone to the bathroom, been ill and then wound up on the floor. When I arrived he was in the lounge, seated. He admitted to me that he had a headache.

The challenge of Chet's autism is that he is perpetually out of touch with his body.  Most of the time he does not notice pain till it reaches a level of crisis and has rendered him nauseous.  There are also other times when a paper cut will cause him to be in paroxyisms of pain but for the most part, it is the former scenario that plays out here.  The down side of this is that if the headache has reached that state there is nothing that I can do. I can't give him any med as he can not hold it down.

So there I am at church, with Rob scheduled to play on the piano and the littles in their classes and Chet, on the couch in the lounge.  I reassured the folks at church that this scenario is not frequent, but not uncommon either.  Chet is a man of extremes. Feeling slightly dizzy will cause him to lay down on the ground spread eagled.  This is not a sign we need to call 911. (smile)

I sat with him till service was over and then walked him to our car, rounded up everyone else and beat feat home.  As expected, he fell asleep in his bed and woke 1 1/2 hours later refreshed and ready to eat.  I hate that his autism blocks his ability to reach out for help when it could solve something.  I am grateful for friends at church who handled this all with considerable kindness and grace.

1 comment:

bkwildandwonderful said...

poor dude.... hope he is on the mend.