Outings are always fun in one way or another with my kids. You can be assured that there’s rarely a dull moment that’s for sure! Ella has been staying at her friend’s house for the past 2 nights so it’s just been me and the 2 boys. It’s been fun and dramatic and exciting and devastating all at once!
But I have definitely noticed the massive change in dynamics between 2 and 3 kids. And I miss my girl like crazy!
Normally whenever I go out with the kids during the holidays, She takes one boy and I take the other making the whole experience much more palatable! But yesterday, they were separated because one of my closest friends took Harley for a few hours off to Build-a-Bear (which is one of his all time favourite places in the world) and I got to have a Mummy-Lucas day. We had an absolute ball!
We did all the fun things that sadly we have to miss when Harley is with us like eating Happy Meals (Lucas can eat gluten – Harley cannot).
We went to a play centre with ball pits, flashing lights and huge climbing structure and we went shopping at a toy sale in a heavily crowded shop. In this shop – Lucas got lost and had to be called over the loudspeaker *ahem* and that alone was an interesting experience. This kid is the exact opposite of his brother sensory wise and is not the least bit intimidated by lights, crowds or noises. In fact, he thrives on them. He ran off in pursuit of the toy aisles and I couldn’t find him anywhere!
I felt the familiar panic rise in my chest and went straight over to the lady standing on the front door of the store and asked her if she’d seen a little boy wearing jeans and a Lego man shirt. She said that she hadn’t so I asked her to please make sure that he doesn’t leave with anyone.
I couldn’t believe it but she actually rolled her eyes at me and turned to her co-worker and uttered “another runaway child”
I looked her in the eyes and said: “Well, actually, I’m not asking you to help me find him but you need to know that he’s autistic and it’s likely that he would walk out with anyone that grabs his hand because he has no sense of danger”.
About ten minutes later, I spotted him casually strolling along holding a big stuffed dog under his arm and smiling broadly. I ran over to him and grabbed his little hand about to tell him that I was glad I found him when a worker started laying into him and telling him what a naughty boy he was for running off! I smiled thinly at her and turned by back and walked away with my totally oblivious little boy skipping along beside me.
Later on, we met up with my friend and Harley for coffee and (as they always do) my boys needed a toilet stop. I was walking with Lucas over to the restrooms when he clutched his backside with one hand and grabbed mine with the other and ‘shouted’ “Quick Mum, hurry up, the poo’s already coming out”…..
Yes I know: charming right!
We were in the restrooms and while I waited for him to finish, I noticed a boy about 9 or 10 twirling around in circles on the spot. He was holding a Sonic plush toy and talking to it saying “You’re my best friend in the whole world” and I thought: Hmmmmm, that’s rather familiar! LOL
As we walked back to the coffee shop I noticed this boy again with his mother and he now had his jacket off and was wearing a Sonic T-shirt with Lucas’ real name written on it so Harley marches up to him and says in a completely monotone voice: “I have that Sonic, that’s my brother’s name and I like Sonic too”.
They boy looked up at Harley and said in an equally monotone voice rather matter-of-a-factly: “Sonic is my best friend”.
“Ok” replied Harley and walked off!
I love moments like these – it’s like they both sensed something familiar in each other. It was gorgeous, hilarious and awkward all at once.
We finally bid farewell to our friends, left the coffee shop and I had a couple of grocery items to buy so we walked over to the supermarket so I could quickly grab them before we left. As I was waiting at the checkout to be served, there was a little merry-go-round toddler ride out the front only a couple of metres away so I told the boys that they could play on it while I payed the lady.
After I’d finished, I walked over to them and noticed that there was another little boy who would’ve been about 5 or 6 also playing with them. I said “Ok, boys, it’s time to go, say good-bye to your friend”.
Lucas turned and waved and said “Bu-bye” but Harley looked at me indignantly, screwed up his face and declared (VERY loudly): “He’s not our friend, he’s just some random kid who was already here when we arrived” while rolling his eyes at me. “Sheesh Mum”.
Quick as a flash, I scooped him up under my arm, put him in the trolley with the rest of the shopping and took off as fast as I could.
Like I said: never a dull moment!