Back in June, Susan and I did an interview with abcnews.com for a feature they were doing on autism families. The piece is finally up on their site: Autism Voices and Views. We talked about Nat’s involvement in Special Olympics, and they took pictures at a swim practice. I think they did a good job capturing us.
In one of the shots, I am walking on the pool deck, holding my hand above Nat while he swims the back stroke. This is a swim coach hack I invented to try to get him to lower his head into the water. He naturally swims with his head held up out of the water, as if he’s trying to see his feet. To get him to put his head back, I tried walking the deck ahead of him, telling him to look at my hand. It worked for a little while, until he realized there was nothing very interesting about my hand!
This is one of the interesting things about raising a special needs child: you come up with your own techniques, because even the specialists will need to invent stuff specially for each child, and you know yours better than anyone, so you’ve got a good shot of coming up with the successful tricks.
And then you realize that this is true of all your children!