Both of my children were born in November. On top of that my sisters son was born in December. So between birthdays and holidays those months are crazy busy. In order to make it easier for everyone we have always thrown one big birthday party for the kids. Usually it was just family, but this year, this year we would invite their friends.
Maria and Jackson are both on the autism spectrum and so both of them invited their atypical classmates to come to their party. My nephew is not on the spectrum and he invited all this typical classmates to come. What could go wrong… well actually nothing.
To our surprise nothing went wrong. Matt and I went out of our way to make sure the house was ready for the event. We had a big bounce house for the older kids, and blew up our small on for the younger kids. We had a variety of snacks and drinks and we created a quiet zone in the kids bedrooms in case it got too loud outside for the autistic children.
In total we had 8 autistic children and 5 typical children at the birthday party and zero meltdowns. The autistic children had fun playing in the bounce house, exploring all of the toys and hanging out with each other. The mothers of the autistic children had a blast too. Once they realized that we understood them and their children, that their children could go and play with what ever they wanted in our house without getting in trouble, they relaxed. They talked to each other and socialized. For me this was the best part of this party. Talking to other moms, getting see our children co-existing together, and understanding that we aren’t alone in this journey.