My son, Christian (CJ) went to Walmart with me for a few groceries the day before yesterday. He kept so calm in the store, so i let him pick a toy from the toy aisle as a little incentive. After much deliberation, he picked a Thomas and Friends portable train track with a Thomas train.
As we were leaving the aisle, he saw a few more Thomas toys. I wasn’t aware that there are over 25 different trains and a white helicopter named Harold. I told Christian that we could buy Harold next time, thinking he would forget about him and play with his new train set. I should have known better.
As I was getting ready to leave work and come home today, my husband sent me a quick text. It said: CJ is standing at the kitchen window. I asked him what he is doing there and he said, “I’m waiting for mommy, she’s bringing Harold home.” My heart sank when I read that.
For those who may not have little boys, Harold is a white helicopter from the Thomas and Friends cartoon. My son Christian loves Thomas and Friends. He will watch the same cartoon every night if we let him. I’m positive that I have the entire cartoon memorized by now.
Most parents may not have paid much attention to this type of situation. So my son wanted a toy, big deal right?
My husband and I both know that for CJ, this is a big deal. CJ, like many other ASD children, can become very nervous with anticipation and possibly meltdown when a parent doesn’t keep a promise or hold up the end of a bargain. I said I’d buy him Harold the next time I went to the store, and he took what I said as gold.
I did go by Walmart this afternoon, but it was not the same one we visited the other day. Of course this Walmart did not carry much of the Thomas and Friends line of toys, and there was not one Harold toy in the store. I just knew this would happen. Why didn’t I go to the same Walmart I went to yesterday? I could just imagine CJ’s face when I walked through the door.
I quickly sent a text to my husband and let him know about the situation. “Should I go to the other Walmart?” I asked. My husband replied, “No, gas is too expensive, just come home.” “I’ll explain to him that you are looking for Harold, but he may be playing hide and seek with you, so you are having trouble finding him.” I laughed. As i was exiting the toy aisle, i ran across some Angry birds magnets and mini stuffed animals. CJ loves angry birds, so I grabbed the three items, paid and drove home.
When I opened that door, my son was standing there waiting for me. He had such an excited look on his face and yelled, “Mommy, mommy, mommy, did you find Harold?” I quickly said, “No CJ I didn’t find Harold. I think he went to a different store. But i found some angry birds who were lost, do you want to see them?” He replied, “Oh sure!”
Score one for mom.
This was just a quick and funny post, but it really does give a small glimpse of what me and my husband can go through each day. I guess to some parents, this isn’t a big deal and certainly not something to skip going straight home from work for, but for us, something even this insignificant can make or break the day for our son.
Not to worry, my mom and dad found & bought Harold and he is snug in CJ’s Easter basket, waiting for him to open it!