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The Best Day Ever

By Matthewspuzzle @matthewspuzzle
The Best Day Ever

The Best Day Ever

To tell you about the best day ever, I have to first tell you about some pretty difficult times. When I was pregnant with Matthew, him being our first child, I had all these wonderful dreams for him. I assumed we would be able to take him to the park and watch him as he climbed the ladder to the slide, how he would swing with other children and how we would be able to have a picnic. I dreamed of taking him to ball games and stopping for ice cream on the way home. I thought I was promised those amazing family vacations where things were just easy and life was fun. But early on it became painfully obvious that life wasn’t normal. Matthew had serious hypotonia, or low muscle tone, which meant he couldn’t crawl, sit up or walk. He spent hours in physical therapy, but even as that slowly improved, we continued to see other issues arise. And full blown autism set in. If you don’t know what autism is like, I don’t think I can do it justice. The fear and anguish that accompanies watching your child drift further and further behind, and having every professional you talk to tell you there is really no hope. Your child’s future goes from a beautiful and bright driving force, to a dark and overcast gray gloom. The stress you endure for years is often unbearable, you feel like a failure, you can’t enjoy the accomplishment of others and you start to spiral into depression. It is a scary diagnosis and so hard to listen to all the well meaning professionals as they yet again tell you about your child’s deficiencies. IEP meetings can be hell.

But, let’s fast forward to this past week. My husband decided to take Thursday off from work and got the family tickets to a children’s amusement park just a few hours away in Pennsylvania. I used to go to Dutch Wonderland when I was a child and I have many friends with children the same age as ours who can’t stop raving about the fun they have had at the park. Last year there was no way we would have been able to enjoy a day at Dutch Wonderland. Matthew would have been too frightened to get on most of the rides and probably would have spent most of his time stimming. It would have been no fun for the other boys and would have been heartbreaking to me and my husband to watch. So how do we go from there to the Best Day Ever?

Recently we started a new protocol and we have seen miraculous improvement while using it. And this protocol has given us the Best Day Ever. We were the typical family at the amusement park. There was no complaining, no tantruming, no fear, no stimming and no inattentiveness. Instead there was excitement, a sense of adventure, interest, attentiveness and camaraderie. Matthew was excited to join in every activity including the roller coaster, the sky ride which takes you high above the park in something similar to a ski lift, the log/water ride which elicited screams of delight and “again, again”, and the everything in between. He especially enjoyed the water park where he could dump bucket loads of water on the other “team” across the park. The day was extremely hot, but Matthew didn’t complain, instead he led the way to the next ride, checked on his little brother and just enjoyed the day with his family. On the ride home he spontaneously thanked his dad for thinking of this amazing trip and taking us to Dutch Wonderland. That was a huge and unexpected milestone as thanking anyone for anything was not usually in his repertoire.

The Best Day Ever

As you can see this was one of the best days I have ever experienced since the birth of our children. It was something I had always dreamed of and something I did not think we would achieve. I am so thankful that this day came. I could not have asked for a more meaningful and heartfelt day than this. I do not believe that words can do this day justice. So I’ll leave you with some beautiful images of our Best Day Ever!

The Best Day Ever

The Best Day Ever

The Best Day Ever

The Best Day Ever


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