Monday, January 2, 2017

Returning to Routine

Tomorrow we return back to our normal routine and with that comes disappointment that the season of "magic" has come to an end but also, some relief too. This year has been like many others in which we spend lots of time with family and friends, eat/drink way too much, participate in many holiday traditions, but also, make so many memories as a family. The kids have brought back so much excitement and the time spent between Thanksgiving and New Years is packed with so many fun activities.

However, having a child who has difficulties when his normal day to day routine is disrupted and some anxiety over anything that's "different" (and really, so many things fall into this category) that it can be difficult, especially over the holiday break. Colin is a child who relies on the comfort of knowing what comes next every minute of every day and when that changes, it's hard to know how he might react or handle it. Most of the time, he can adjust fairly well when highly motivating activities and people are involved. There are also many variables that can make any activity challenging (even when it is going well) like sounds, pets, things that make him frustrated, or when others aren't doing what he expects or thinks they should be doing. This anxiety is often evident when he cries, yells, gets very irritable, or even swats/pushes someone. Many times, these things from an outsider's perspective just look like he's cranky, having a meltdown/tantrum, or even not being very nice. While we understand most of the time why he might react the ways that he does and do the best we can to work through it, it can be very frustrating on our end because we can't always "fix" it. Sometimes, the best solution to the problem is just to have a normal routine back and so there is a part of me that is looking forward to returning to that again tomorrow.

It certainly has been a wonderful holiday season and I am so thankful for all of the memories that we were busy making. The end of the holiday break, the removing of the decorations, and the return to the sameness always makes me feel a little bit sad, but with an end always comes a beginning and I am optimistic for all that lies ahead in 2017. Cheers to a happy, healthy and fun new year!

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