Right Here

Jim and Charlie off for a ride in Liberty State Park, Jersey City  
That's one of the phrases Charlie has been saying of late, along with a few others:

'Right now!', which I'm presuming he picked up from being told he needed to do something 'right now'; Charlie often takes a couple extra beats (minutes, hours, days….) to think something through and execute it.

Also, we've been hearing this little litany: 'Leave here! Leave home! Stays in house!" These phrases are in reference to us telling Charlie not to bring an awful lot of stuff (mostly king-size fleece blankets) into the back seat of the white car. 

He often says this assortment of phrases while looking directly at us and, too, often breaks into a pleased smile after reciting them. We sometimes repeat the phrases after him, in a sort of call and response. As these are phrases that have bothered Charlie in the past (and, too, sometimes led to unhappy moments), I think he's in part saying them as a way of expressing 'see this bothered me before but not anymore, ha!'. I also think he's sort of doing a little test on us, saying those 'loaded phrases' to see how we respond and then pleased, if not relieved, to see that nothing much ensues. 

Have the phrases been denuded of their 'magic power' with Charlie himself being the one saying them?

Being 'right here' nicely describes our Sunday, a good day spent at home (i.e. without our usual weekend beach jaunt).

It was overcast and rained in the afternoon. Charlie slept in till 8.15am (vs, you know, 6am). He was in a moaning sort of way when we went walking, but much chipper by the half-way point. He helped himself to a full meal (sushi, for a start) and then, as the bikes were still strapped to the bike rack, Jim suggested we go to Liberty State Park.

Charlie at the start of a bike ride in Liberty State Park

Jim and Charlie biked past the tourists in line for the ferry to see the Statue of Liberty, Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty, the Liberty Science Center, as far out as they could. Then the path ended and Jim led them back and they ended up biking up on some Jersey City streets, like this one.

Charlie and Jim were here (on this Jersey City street), on bikes
I only have start-and-end photos as Jim and Charlie started from the parking lot, and ended there, so you'll have to wait for photos of Charlie biking by the Statue of Liberty (it does beat waiting in a muggy line to get on a ferry—something we're not planning to do, at least in the not so distant future).

Charlie back from bike riding around Liberty State Park 

The rest of the day (after a stop for Vietnamese summer rolls) was spent at home. Charlie must be on a growth spurt or some such as he unintentionally helped us clean out the freezer. He broke open a bag of frozen Ore-Ida French fries and microwave a heap: This was a bit of a big thing as, for quite awhile, Charlie has only wanted to eat frozen fries out of a blue bag (i.e., a different brand). There was computer-using and some resting and, once it stopped raining, another bike ride in somewhat wet conditions, but I don't think Charlie minds being wet. And, inevitably, another walk which started (as the photographic evidence below reveals) with an all-out sprint by Charlie.

After not living in our house for three years while we were living with my in-laws and then in a rented apartment in another town where Charlie attended the autism program (until it all went sour), Sunday at home is a real treat and I'm hoping to repeat the experience in the not too distant future.

Charlie sprinting down the street

3 Responses to “Right Here”
  1. Louise says:

    The real Sunday-at-home treats start when you include house and yard work in that mix (heehee).
    I love that photo of Charlie running. How soon til you think he can go out for a run by himself? Can he learn how to use a cellphone, or get a GPS tacking device, so that you can keep some contact with him?
    He’s delighted to be growing up and making progress. He’s seeing the changes in himself, which is obviously a thrill for him. Once our children realize that they do change and yet remain themselves, and that they can direct those changes, the sky is the limit for them. They begin to turn into wonderful, unexpected, and surprising new people.

  2. autismvox says:

    I’m amazed I caught him in mid-run!
    Will work on the yard work…… I don’t think he’ll ever be able to go out for a run on his own, not in the near future. Too many concerns about safety should a stranger approach him and, while Charlie knows how to cross the street, he’s sometimes impulsive and runs.

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