When my girls was young, I left them with some wonderful Amish friends for a week while I went with a medical mission team out of the country. My girls always have a wonderful time on these friend’s farm, but they had never stayed anywhere for that long. I missed my girls and couldn’t wait to see them. When I returned my 7 yr old Aspie ran and hid as we pulled in.
It was like I was a stranger to her.
She was having fun on the farm and that was what was her new focus and what was familiar to her for the week so she didn’t want the “change” of going home. I felt hurt that she didn’t come running to meet me. I knew she loved us but her emotions are just different than her sisters. When she finally got reconnected with me she didn’t want to be anywhere else.
The experience was good for both of us to see that she can eventually adapt to a new surrounding. We’ve had several other times through the years where I’ve had to leave her. She’s 16 now and I believe those little separations were stepping stones for the time when she will be grown and I may not be around to care for her.
I know she loves her family and lets me know in many ways but her emotions seems to so often to be out of kilter. Things that most people would be happy about she might be over exuberant or wear a blank emotionless face, like the joyful moment hasn’t yet touched her.
I know she isn’t always able to adapt to the environment, so often we have to adapt our world around her, never knowing for sure what is going to set off a melt down or make her joyfully happy. I believe she feel the emotions that a NT child does but she expresses them differently. With her as with all our children we focus on one day at a time, loving them for who they are, while trusting God to get us through this journey.
What steps do you take to adapt to an environment?