As we regroup after last week’s health struggles, from which Melissa is feeling better but not all the way back, we realize that a long anticipated event is sneaking up on us.
This coming weekend, our autistic son will spend his first night away from home and without us. (Melissa and I have had a few nights away over the years, but always with someone to watch Joey in our own familiar home.) This time, we will make use of a respite night through his community program, in which he will spend the evening in one of their apartments. The staff are taking him over to see it and talk about it during the week. He’s grown in his ability to understand information about upcoming events.
This is a family first, and part of our overall preparation for the day when he will move into a permanent residential placement.
But lots of question marks accompany the plan:
Will he hate it, and go bonkers the next time we try it? Or will he love it and not want to come home?
Will any health emergencies complicate the weekend? Joey still has the occasional seizure, for instance.
Will Melissa and I be able to have fun at an event planned for that night? Or will our own depleted energy levels pin us down at home?
Care giving? It’s, like, always talking in, like, questions? You never know, like, how things will turn out?
It’s like this guy is running our lives: