Rituals, Something to Howl About

daily ritual Yo, Mick here, the happy howler with the wet nose.

We’ve been passing the days one at a time with our daily ritual a bit buggered. Mum’s Honda Odyssey Transmission died up at Grandma’s in Pacific Grove the day before Easter.

Our daily rituals are a wreck.

Did you know that there is a flaw with Honda Odyssey Transmissions that they are trying to cover up? Seriously! Mum has been onto all types of websites researching the hundreds and probably thousands of complaints.

She put a new transmission in when the van had less than 100,000 and now with under 200,000 she’s going to have to put another in – and many others have had to do the same!

But that’s not what I wanted to talk about. I want to discus rituals. The daily rituals that make the day run smooth (or not) that people with autism truly depend on.

Red and I get up after Mum’s had her cup of coffee.

She used to get up between 4:30 and 5:30 to do homework but that’s a thing of the past (at least until things get sorted out with University of Phoenix and the problems they are causing her – she may have to take yet another class and pay an additional $1950 out of pocket because they lied!).

Oops, there I digress again. Sorry.

Rituals help keep the day flowing for us.

Even with the schedule mucked because our lack of wheels has caused us to adjust to walking more, scootering and hitching rides from friends, we depend on our rituals to motivate.

As I was saying, Mum gets her coffee, reads and answers a few emails and writes some on her projects and then at 6:30 she wakes us.

No matter how many times she has done this, I act like it’s the first time and bark a bit at her. Hey, I’m not a morning mutt. What can I say? I’m a grumpy grrrrr.

Red though, he seems to like mornings, which is really pretty lucky for mum. He grabs his blanket, scoops Furball the cat up and we pile up on Mum’s lap in the living room.

Of course I get the top! Hound of the heap!

We rock for a few minutes and the day begins to feel like it has all sorts of possibilities for happiness.

Red almost falls back asleep, Furball purrs which is really weird because I’m usually sitting on top of him, and Mum smiles because she likes the snuggle peacefulness.

And then we howl!

Mum starts it off. She does this weird sound like a bird that gets me all worked up and I tilt back my head and howl and then Mum howls and Red says, “do it again”,

and we do.

It’s impossible to be upset when getting in a howl.

Transitioning to the next segment of the morning routine just seems so easy.

Howling sets the stage for a Grrrrreat Day!

Wait a minute; didn’t Tony, the Frosted Flakes tiger say that?

Oh well, he can have a grrrreat day; we have a day to howl about!

Here’s to howllllin a grrreat day too!

Irene Carroll

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