Swim Carnival. “She would have been fine without me.” Large school events have always been a nightmare for Indi. Last year, cross country ended with her nearly vomiting and needing to take refuge in the school office with her ‘safe person’. Even with preparation and me there to support her they have not been worth the anxiety and aftermath.
This year though, her school have been absolutely wonderful in supporting her. They listened to my concerns and responded with nothing but understanding and ACTION. This was her first swim carnival and it is not in school grounds. We took her to the aquatic centre where the carnival was going to be the weekend before so she was familiar with the environment. We packed her sensory items, chew necklace, blanket, water spray bottle, ear muffs, sun glasses, voice cards, and plenty of snacks. Her classroom teacher talked a lot about what the day would be like, where she would be, and what to expect. I went through all her ‘what if’s’ in the lead up. But the best thing was that school assigned a teacher aid to her for the whole day. This was someone she knew and felt comfortable with. She was full of trepidation that morning but as soon as she saw her teacher aid, a grin spread across her face. This was the first school event in 4 years that I have not needed to be by her side. Being prepared and knowing she had this person to support her meant she had a wonderful day. Without it, the unknown, the uncertainty, the not being sure of the directions, the anxiety, the sensory overload, become all too much. And when I arrived to pick her up and saw the connection she had with her teacher aid I had a very full heart. I was told, “She was great! She would have been fine without me!”
No, she was fine because she was prepared and BECAUSE she had you.” Please remember that removing support because our ASD children appear fine, can actually undo all the work to get them there. Support for inclusion ️ #asd #aspiegirl #inclusion #teacheraide #swimcarnival #support #imateachertoo #schoolsports - 8 hours ago