We took our first trip to the park today with the boys. It's always difficult for us going to the park because Ayden primarily hates it, and Issac loves it. At the very least, it's a two-parent job.
Last year, our first trip was in April. Ayden spent the ENTIRE time screaming. He didn't want to swing, he didn't want to slide, he basically didn't want to even go near the playground equipment. Of course, his low-tone little legs definitly don't help anything (what fun is a playground when you can't CLIMB). Nor the fact that the playground isn't on cement. Ayden doesn't even step on grass really with shoes, so of course wood chips are just a big NO for his little sensory issues. And let's not even start on walking with his balance issues and turned-in feet! Overall, sometimes it's just easier to skip it even when little brother enjoys it so much.
This year, was a lot better. Ayden has gained a lot of independance in a year, and immediatly wanted to go to the water next to the playground. He had spotted a duck and was all "BIRD BIRD" - very cute! So, daddy went with big brother while little brother and I went to the slides! Issac did amazing on the slides - climbed up and went down by himself. At the end, he got his hands dirty (Issac is not a fan of dirty hands) so I taught him to wipe his hands on his shirt and say "icky". Ayden and Daddy joined us, and Ayden went up on the playground equiptment with no prompting or assistance!! He ran around a lot, even on the 'wobbly bridge' and actually started to have some fun. He tried the slide, but certainly wasn't fond of it. Either way, exploring on his own, trying new things, dancing around, and laughing were just a couple of BIG WINS for this mommy. You'd think I would have left after that, let's not push it, right?
Well, we headed to the part of the playground with baby swings for Issac since he loved the swings so much last year. Ayden started screaming immediatly upon being led away from the playground by the water. He continued screaming the entire way there, and even once we got there. Daddy got him to calm down and have a little more fun playing though - including going headfirst down the tube slide so Ayden could hold his hand while he went down.
We tried to get him in the swings, but again - much screaming ensued! Daddy had the amazing idea to just put Ayden on his lap and swing. OH MY GOODNESS. My little man LIT UP the park with his giggle and squeals of delight. He had so much fun, it was like a different kid. I was so proud of him, but it was what happened right before we left that just melted my heart....
I was pushing Issac on the swings while Ayden was on the swings wth Daddy. When they were done, Ayden came over and wanted to push the swing. He has no concept of moving objects and that they can ya know, hit him in the face...so I helped him learn how to get out of the way and push his brother. He did so well, and they both had so much fun. It's one of the sweetest big-brother things I've seen him do.
So, when I say SUCCESS in the post, I really mean it. It's amazing the difference a year can make. Here are some pictures, for those on FB with me - there are some videos up there too!
Just for reference....this was March 2010.
Wanting Dad to pick you up, check.
Cuddling so as not to be put down...check.
More clinging to daddy...check.
More cuddling Daddy...check. ((Though makes for an amazing picture!)