Puzzles. My boy shows no interest. He was all right with the wooden puzzles with individual pieces, but once those pieces had to fit with one another, he gave up. Big Bro was a fan of those floor puzzles, so we have a lot. I've tried to engage him--especially with the alphabet puzzle--because I want to provide some kind of structured activity at home, but he balks. He barely looks at them, and then tries to mash the pieces to make them fit.
At one point, I actually said, "Dude! Aren't you supposed to be good at this?" Then I laughed and scolded myself, and poured a glass of wine.
I find it amusing that the puzzle piece is supposed to be the symbol of autism, and my kid hates them. If I had to develop our own personalized symbol of autism awareness, it would be a decapitated Disney figure, but perhaps that's too macabre for the general public. I doubt people would buy car magnets or get tattoos of something that looks like the work of Sid from Toy Story.
He's not that into trains. He shows a mild interest. He likes to watch the Thomas the Tank Engine video while jumping on a trampoline and shouting the names of all the trains, but that's about it. He has a little wooden train set his therapist tries to get him to build for some functional play, but it's not a passion.
|$6 ticket. He lasted 10 minutes. That's 60 cents/minute of fun!|
There's a model train museum about 30 minutes from our house, and I'll take him from time to time. Sometimes we'll stay for 10 minutes, sometimes longer. The "museum" is in a little strip mall, and the owner has set up a really lovely display. He also has religious showcases and anything else that strikes his fancy. What I find hilarious about the whole situation is that this man, who is very nice, has absolutely no idea that he has built Autism Graceland. When I take the boy in there, the only other people I see are other moms and other flapping boys. And the owner tries very hard to encourage the kids to look at his display of bicentennial memorabilia, and seems a little confused by the jumping and humming and flapping. He never says a word about it, though. He's good people.
The boy doesn't like Legos, either. I wish he did. I wish he showed an interest in something other than breaking my house.
You know, I used to hear these stories of kids on the spectrum who obsessed over a certain toy or puzzle or collection or, I dunno, a pair of socks, and were absorbed for hours. Understandably, their parents were concerned. But I can't help feeling a teensy bit jealous. My son has nothing that keeps him occupied for five minutes, let alone an hour or so. I can barely imagine what it would be like to have time to pee by myself.
He doesn't line up his toys. Like ever.