Spectrummy Mummy

Asperger's, Allergies, and Adventures Abroad

Posts Tagged ‘Shower

Shower

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The morning started out fine.  Pudding didn’t try to get in our bed until right before the alarm went off at 5.30.  I got to enjoy most of my cup of tea in bed, the two of them sitting peacefully together watching Sesame Street.  Pudding demanded pancakes for breakfast, and I agreed to make them.  So right up until 7, it was a perfect morning.  I had Pudding washed and dressed and ready for school.

Then I decided to take a shower.

I felt the warm tingle on my skin, heard the hum of the water hitting the tiles, closed my eyes and meditated on the simplest of life’s luxuries.  It is a good place to just be, there have been many times I’ve taken that 5 minutes and let my stress wash away down the drain.  But it comes at a price.  Either there is banging on the door, and screaming, or- worse- the sound of silence.  Sometimes I don’t know what scene will greet me as I emerge soaked.  One thing for sure, I haven’t taken a shower in peace for a very long time.  Today there was no pounding on the door.  I grabbed my robe and headed downstairs.

Before I even saw it, I knew it would be the pouring.  Pudding’s stim of all stims.  She loves to pour from one vessel to another.  It is the reason why we have long baths with lots of cups, why we play on the sand & water table for hours, why in bad weather we’ll pour water together at the table.  But it is never enough for her.  We’ve put child-proof handles on doors to stop her getting to the taps (faucets) for more water.  We have to swipe away every item that could become a pouring vessel before she gets the idea.  Our kitchen is a galley one, with no doors, so we put up gates on either end, and a lock on the fridge door.

You’d think that would be enough.

A gate was pushed down, and the fridge door wide open.  The tap was still running with water all over the kitchen floor.  Cubby was carrying a cup, and the minute he saw me he deliberately turned it upside-down.  Pudding was on the carpet in the dining room, trying to mop up a pink stain.  It was the very expensive liquid omega supplement we give the kids because they can’t eat fish, and is also gluten and dairy-free.  It is also in her hair, and her clothes.

I don’t even recognize my own voice as I start yelling.  It is low and deep.  Full of rage.  The kids are terrified of course.  I usher them upstairs.  I strip Pudding of her clothes and give her new ones.  I take her Abby doll, and tell her she can’t leave the room until I get back.  I go down to clean up as best I can.

When I return, she is still naked, no longer in her room, but at the basin in mine.  Water.  Again.

She begins to sob as soon as she sees me.  She attempts to apologize, but she is incoherent through her tears.  She knows she is wrong, but she just can’t help this impulsive, compulsive behaviour.  No social story, no punishment seems to work.  Positive reinforcement works until I’m not around.  I feel like I’ve tried everything, and I don’t know what else to do.

I just hold in more anger, waiting for my time to pour it out.  One thing is certain, I can no longer let it wash away in the shower.

I wrote this earlier this morning, but decided not to post it.  I felt better for writing it, and don’t need a reminder of this morning for posterity.  Then, the SPD Bloggger Network published this post of mine, and I was reminded of Pudding’s connection with water.  It makes her feel right, and I take that feeling for granted every day.  Instead, I welcome any sensory suggestions for Pudding’s water craving.  I think we’ll start again with a morning bath, at the very least.  As important as a shower is to me, water means everything to her.

Written by Spectrummy Mummy

May 27, 2011 at 12:33 pm