My husband recently got a new job and we had to relocate from NJ to PA. Now to most people this wouldn’t be so bad, but to my son, it could be a major problem.
Billy likes routine, like most children with autism. He is very set in his ways and if we waiver from his routine we can throw him completely off for the day. So, when we found out we were moving we worried about how he would adjust. It is hard with him right now, because he doesn’t talk much and still is learning to communicate what he needs with us.
My parents watched the kids for us the first day of our move. My husband drove the moving truck and I followed behind in the car. We got to our new home and unloaded everything. Once the truck was returned, we discussed what to do next. Both my husband and I agreed that the first thing to do would be get the kids rooms all set up. So when they came they had their own space all ready to go. Especially for Billy…
We decided since Billy loves all thing Thomas The Tank Engine, we would do a whole Thomas room just for him. We bought him a new big boy bed, Thomas of course. Up until we moved he has been sleeping in a crib still, so this would be the first time in a regular bed. We got Thomas wall stickers, Thomas blanket and stuffed dolls.. Even moved all his trains in his room. We set up his entire room for him.
The next day my parents arrived with the kids. We took them both up to their rooms to see all the new stuff. Billy was so beyond excited when he saw his new room, he ran up to his new Thomas bed, patted it on its head and than gave it a kiss! Billy never kisses anything, so this was super exciting, and super cute. He must have stayed in his room for about 3 hours that day, just playing with his trains and sitting on his new bed. It made me so happy to know he really enjoyed the room, but I still was weary on how bedtime would go. First night in a new place, and first night in a big boy bed.
That night we did his usual bedtime routine, than put him into his new bed. You know what was amazing? He stayed in the bed! He sat up and played for a little bit while he watched tv. Once his tv went off, we heard nothing, silence, not a single noise… We went up to see how he was, and he was sound asleep! SUCCESS!!!! He had actually gone to sleep in the new bed with no problems. We couldn’t be happier.
And, ever since that night, he has gone to sleep in his bed every night, with not one problem?
It is truly amazing to see how well he did with the move. To know he was okay and we didn’t throw off his routine too much. It makes me smile everytime I see him just sitting in his room playing, or sleeping in his new bed. I am so happy that he loves the Thomas room. And, truly blessed for how well he is doing. As any mom of a child with autism knows, every little success, every little new thing, every little milestone is a major cause for celebration! I am so proud of my little man, of each new thing he does. He truly amazes me and makes me a better person.
*originally written in April 2015*