Like most children diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), James works on a strict schedule. He thrives on routine. He based his behavior on the expectations of each part of his day. Every morning at 6 o’clock, he wakes up, takes a bath with his rubber ducky, and wears his uniform. He eats strawberry pancakes every breakfast. He finishes off with a glass of milk.
At exactly 7:30, he waits at the bus stop for his school bus. He sits at his usual spot behind the driver when it arrives. Aware of his ASD, the bus driver always makes sure to arrive on time. The children who ride with him, always leave his spot empty.
At school, he also follows the same routine. When there is a change of schedule, his teacher makes sure to inform the parents beforehand. This way, he can be prepared to deal with it in school. He goes home with his older sister who picks him up from school at 2:30.
At home, he changes into cleaner clothes. He stays in the living room for the remainder of the day. He plays with his Legos or puzzles quietly and expects a snack at 3:15. Like many children, James likes to be left alone. After a whole day of socializing with teachers and classmates, that’s okay.
The only problem with James’ routine is the intermittent arrival of packages and mail in the house. As soon as the doorbell starts to ring, James succumbs into a fit of crying and shouting. It takes a while to calm him down. He never likes loud noise and disruption to his silent world.
When we installed the SadoTech Mini Door Sensor, there was a noticeable change in his behavior. When he hears the cheerful chime of the doorbell, he just looks up. Upon seeing the familiar face of the mailman, he returns to his work.
With the knowledge that someone he doesn’t know is coming, James is able to develop a new routine. He remained calm and even deals it positively. When calm, James is able to do the next and his favorite part of the day. Walk the dog around their block with his older brother.
Raising a child with ASD is not easy, but it is not impossible. There are so many ways you can use to help them learn to cope with life. It will only feel impossible if you take on this journey alone. Use your resources, take advantage of all the help that is offered to you. Remember, it takes a village to raise a child. You are not meant to do this alone. With everyone's help, you can do this!