A journey through grief with autism.

Alan Greenwell

3-Minute Read


Well week 5 is upon us. Week 4 has been a tough week for Tam.

We had a successful tour bus ride around town to cool him off and calm him down and he cradled the camera both circuits and took some photos unprompted. Really chuffed with them as well.

A less successful train ride to the coast for fish and chips and a walk on the beach. He refused fish and chips so I made a valiant but misguided effort to eat 2 fish and chips. I know I know. Middle age spread needs a reason and those fish and chips were lovely.

Tam refused to go down to the beach and just wanted to sit on a bench and ask about “going to school” and “go home now”. Totally wound up by everything so we headed home.

Is that the sun?

Is that the sun?

The most chilled day was a rainy day which was Tams element. He chilled out and watched some films he found when I emptied the dvd drawers on the floor. It was 4 or 5 hours of calm while I pottered on with chores.

The rest of the week has been going from one lump of anger and frustration from Tam to another with very little sleep. By very little sleep I mean less than 15 hours all week in total. I think 15 hours is wishful and it might be my crappy hand writing when I haven’t had any sleep.

If you haven’t got kids or an autistic child just think about that. 168 hours in a week and less than 10 per cent of it was sleep. Normally about a third is sleep. It makes for a long week and it makes it difficult to concentrate on much more than keeping Tam safe and fed as well as myself. Any thought of anything else goes out the window.

Tonight Tam just cannot settle. It’s after 10pm we are just back from a walk (third walk of the day and nearly 20k steps) and I have given him meds to get him to be calm and sleepy. Neither has happened yet but he is cooler now. Before the walk sweat was dripping off his head he was so wound up.

So a couple of weeks until school. A rough estimate is that Tam will ask about “going to school” about 4-5 times and hour until then. Problem I face is that by the time school comes around Tam will probably not want to go. We will just have to see.

So hello week 5 how you doing?

Stay safe.

Bit of an update as things not started well. Tam been so uptight and upset today asking about school. He has got himself into such a lather he has spent the last 2 hours being sick. I do all I can for him and try my best to explain in a clear and concise way that school is still weeks away but it does not help. Visual diaries get destroyed. I wish at moments like this I could take this frustration off him. 3am and off for a walk to get him cooled down.

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