Every day for the past month, Emma has gone on the bus to summer camp with her brother, Nic and her therapist Joe, shadowing her. Joe tells me this year has been terrific. Emma has tried new things, been engaged and interacted with the other children more than the year before. Today is their last day before coming out to join me in Aspen. Because it’s their last day, Nic told me, they can do whatever they like. Nic said he was probably going to play soccer, practice his archery, swim “a bunch of times” in the the lake and do gymnastics.
I am interested to hear what Emma will do. When I called last night, she was with Joe in her “study room” so I couldn’t speak to her to ask. Not that I would have gotten a clear answer. The future and past are difficult concepts for Emma to express. I never know when I speak with her if she’s referring to something she wants to do, did do, will do in the future or wished she could have done in the past. Despite my confusion in regards to what time frame is being referenced, Emma is usually without complaint.
Emma at camp – 2011
Every afternoon upon returning from camp, Joe and Emma go into her “study room” where she works on her literacy program. I haven’t worked with her for the last ten days, so I am eager to see how she is coming along. Emma’s literacy program, perhaps more than anything else, has caused a significant shift, in Emma, but also in me. The progress she’s made since this January when she was just learning to form her letters, to now, where she is writing one and two sentences, is tremendous to see. But I also feel she is gaining a certain degree of self confidence. Working with her has been incredible as I know how hard it is for her, but she continues to do the work anyway.
Sleep, wake up, sleep, wake up, go on the airplane and see Mommy!
For more on Emma’s journey through a childhood of autism, go to: www.EmmasHopeBook.com