Day #72 – The Challenge With New

Monday morning it was 6 degrees.  Tucker received a new winter coat this weekend (just in time…seriously…how does this sneak up on us in Iowa?!?!).

Commence battle.

Tucker also received a new pair of shoes this weekend.

Commence battle.

We know that children on the spectrum do not like change – they are routine oriented.  But this, this makes me crazy…every single time.  I get change of schedules, I get bedtime routines – but seriously, this?

Each new pair of shoes is a battle.  My old ones are fine.  I don’t need new ones. 

Each new coat is a battle.  My old one is fine.  I don’t need a new one.

Each new t-shirt is a battle.  My old one is fine.  I don’t need a new one.

Why is it so hard to get something new?

That old pair of shoes?  You are on the fourth pair of laces, the top fabric is torn, your toe will poke through in another two weeks.

That old coat?  The zipper handle is gone, it is too short (hence the ‘crack’ jokes), I’m not even sure the stuffing is still warm, the ‘water resistant’ nature is for sure gone.

That old t-shirt.  It is stained, it has tiny rips from you mouthing the neck line, again more ‘crack’ jokes, it’s so faded and dingy.

Tucker doesn’t care.  He loves what is comfortable – don’t we all?  Well, yes – but not the majority of children.  I am willing to bet that if I asked boys in Tucker’s class who wanted a new coat, new shoes, or a new Jordan t-shirt…they would all raise their hand.

He has EVERY pair of shoes he has owned since he was 6…all lurking and collecting dust bunnies under his bed. He knows if you move them.

I have purposely ripped a LARGE hole in a winter coat…simply to make it SO obvious that he couldn’t wear it anymore.

I often buy several of the ‘same’ shirts in various sizes…then I change them out while he’s not looking. 

This is pretty handy at holiday and birthday times – he never wants anything new.  It’s the truth.  Never.  I used to think this was just him being ‘oh so thoughtful.’  It may be…but the more battles we have over coats and shoes and t-shirts, the more I’m realizing it is his disposition towards change.

So, the battles rage on, 6 degrees and he wanted to wear his hoodie.  A hoodie his Grandma and Grandpa gave him a year ago.  He just won’t have any part of this new coat.  Even though I did a thorough coat check.  What does this mean? Well…I arrived at work and a colleague was trying to tell me that going through the ‘coat check’ process was too much and I shouldn’t have to do that.  To him I wanted to say…

autism mom

Don’t argue with me about this…for realz.  A new piece of clothing (in this case coat) means…

  • Feeling each seam…make sure it doesn’t stick out to far and there aren’t any ‘prickly’ parts.
  • Pulling on it to be sure it’s stretchy enough that he won’t get frustrated.
  • Making sure the sleeveholes are large enough that he won’t get frustrated, small enough to keep the cold air out.
  • Checking the elasticity at the bottom (preference being no elastic).
  • Making sure I can cut off the tag without damaging the coat.
  • Trying it on to make sure it’s not too noisy (swishy).
  • Examining the fabric composition to make sure it won’t be too hot (or cold)

It’s a day like this that makes me remember….remember how we are different.  The new coat leads to a 10-minute discussion.

“Tucker, I promise I checked the coat out.”

He proceeds to feel the seams

Pulls on it

Looks through the sleeveholes

Finally, it goes on….I’m holding my breath.

He pulls his hand in and out to make sure it’s not too tight
He pulls the bottom to make sure it’s not too snug around his waist
He feels for the tag
He starts ‘running in place’ with his arms to make sure it’s not too loud
He feels it…all over
Finally, the verdict.

“This will due.  Just don’t throw away my other coat, I’m not done with it yet.”

I won’t Tucker…just like I’m not ‘done’ with you.  Go ahead and keep all of your shoes and your coats because I’m keeping all of these memories tight in my heart…these moments…these moments that are between you and me and very few people will ever understand.

You and me.

3 thoughts on “Day #72 – The Challenge With New

  1. Pingback: Day #279 – Tucker’s Version of Autism | 366 Days of Autism

  2. Pingback: Day #285 – The Space Between | 366 Days of Autism

  3. Pingback: Day #327 – Indexing | 366 Days of Autism

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