"Oh my gosh! He's such a chatterbox." says the waitress.
I just smile and agree. At this moment I am tired. I just want to eat my meal as quick as I can because I know the window of acceptable in public behavior is closing. He's on his last five fries. He's getting stimmy and loud. We need to wrap this up.
I get it. She or anybody sees a happy and cheerful Kiddo talking up a storm. Who couldn't love that? But that ten second sound bite doesn't paint the whole picture. If they stick around longer, they usually start to see what I mean. The flow of conversation is far from traditional and I once again find myself being an Kiddonese to English interpreter to any of them that try to engage with him.
"Oh my gosh! He's so cheerful and he's got so much energy. How do you even keep up?" says the guy at the trampoline park.
I smile, agree and plop myself on a bench because unlike my Kiddo I am exhausted. He's been running around like that since 5AM that morning.
"Yep. He's a real hit the ground running kind of kid." I reply.
Again, I will have this conversation where someone will marvel at the crazy and hyperactive amount of energy my son displays. They will sound both impressed and slightly alarmed by it. I'm no longer offended. My kiddo can make the Tasmanian Devil look like Jeff Spicoli after a bong hit. Folks just don't know what to say when they see him running at full speed. Hell, I don't know what to say to it either.
Autism living is like someone hit the "repeat" button on the same song. I find myself having the same conversations with and about my kiddo. Sometimes I find myself lacking in delivery of these lines and I'm sure it can come across as rude or aloof. I'm not. I'm just tired. I've just had these same chats with you, with him, with others, a million times over.
And you would think by now I would come up with a bevvy of lines to pick from when I find myself in one of these moments. A good actor should be able to improv, right? More often than not I do because humor is usually how I get through it. Even still, I have my days where I just show up and phone it in. "Yeah, he's a hyperactive bundle of energy that never stops talking. Yadda, yadda, yadda. So do you have any coffee and can I sit down?"
No? That performance didn't work for you did it? Once more, with feeling. OK, from the top.
"Why yes. He is just a chatty bunch of sunshine with a peppy go go go!" How was that? Better? ;-)
You don't know what else to say and neither do I. That's okay. It is what it is. Let's run it again from the top, shall we?