Friday, January 27, 2006

Creative pursuits

When I first began private work in the field of autism over twelve years ago, things were much different than they are now. At the time I was working as an ABA therapist for some in-home programs and I would often take my little friends that I worked with on outings, which is something that would never happen today. One of all of my little friend’s favorite outings was to go to my parent’s house, as they owned this very big, very old Victorian house that was fun to explore. We also had a golden retriever, very creatively named “Goldie”, who like all dogs was very special, but the most unique thing about her was her intuitive calmness around small children and that even children who were typically afraid of dogs, loved Goldie. Of course the fact that she had been hit by a car THREE TIMES after jumping off our balcony to chase one of my parents cars when they left the house, helped mellow her out a lot, but she always had a way with children, as well as small dogs and cats…small creatures always loved Goldie. Three years after I had moved and had stopped working with my little friend Jamie, he called my parents house and when my mom answered, he asked her if Goldie was there. Goldie made quite an impression, especially on children.

The day after taking another one of my friends, Aaron to meet Goldie for the first time, he began to ask me about when we were going to see Goldie, and our conversation went almost exactly like this (it’s been a while, but it is always one I remember as it made me laugh so)

A: “SquareGirl, are you going to take me to your mom’s house again to see Goldie? Are we going to see Goldie again? At your mom's house? Will you take me to see Goldie?”
SG: “Yes, Aaron, I’ll take you to my mom’s to see Goldie again.”
A: “ SquareGirl, will you take me to see Goldie? Are you going to take me to your mom’s to see Goldie?”
SG: “Yes, Aaron, I will take you again to see Goldie, I promise”
A: “SquareGirl…Are you going to take me to see Goldie again at your mom’s house?”
SG: “Yes Aaron, but you can’t ask me that anymore. You asked me too many times, so I will take you, but you have to stop asking me.”

After about 2 minutes during which my compliant little Aaron refrained from asking me about Goldie, and I thought I had succeeded in stopping his perseverative questioning, he looked up and me and asked

A: “SquareGirl? I can’t ask you anymore if you are going to take me to see Goldie? I asked you to many times? I can’t ask if you are going to take me to your mom’s house to see Goldie? I can’t ask you anymore?”

I had to laugh. Sometimes there really is no right answer.

7 Comments:

Blogger Wade Rankin said...

Hey, we've all been there. And on the good days, we all laugh.

9:43 AM  
Blogger Ben said...

I was thinking how much more interesting your job is than mine, then I realized just how similar the scene you describe here is to software development when I get this error message popping up and every time you click ok it pops up again.

Of course I can always just kill the program and nobody complains or tries to attach labels like "murderer", or tries to make out like I'm a bad person or anything.

3:45 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Great story, very funny. I bring Willie and Walela to the company picnic. Walela is stand-offish but Willie doesn't rest until he's made friends with all the clients and some will ask about him all year until the next picnic. You understand, I hope, that if the Regional Center funded puppies there would be no more behaviorists.

5:02 PM  
Blogger Kristina Chew said...

My uncle has a golden retriever, Callie, and Charlie adores her--he likes to sneak up from behind for a stealth poke or a tail pull. He has a stuffed dog that is vaguely golden-retriever-ish whom he either calls "doggie Callie" or "orange dog."

10:53 PM  
Blogger Estee Klar-Wolfond said...

I wish Adam could have a dog...I have an allergic husband and allergic step-children.

I worry all the time that Adam doesn't have a daily "companion."

Thanks for this cute story,

Estee

5:54 AM  
Blogger Tori'sPop said...

That story so much reminds me of my daughter. She constantly needs to hear her phrase repeated to her and needs to be told to stop asking repetitive questions.

Great story....it made me smile a lot.

Tori's Pop

8:38 PM  
Blogger SquareGirl said...

First off, Wade and Estee, I LOVE both of your new profile photos, they are adorable and put a smile on my face!

Ben, It really helps that the kids I work with are so darn ADORABLE, as well as authentic and pure of heart...I have a feeling that programs aren't even nearly as lovable.

Doug, I agree and think that your next project shuld be to get Regional Center to fund puppies (I will help in anyway I can)...And I will celebrate the day that there is no longer a need for behaviorists...behaviorists can be quite obnoxious and dull

Kristina,
I had a feeling Charlie would be a fan of dogs, especially golden retrievers!

Estee, again, I love your new profile photo...I had a feeling it wouldn't take you too long to figure out how to do that. You never know what the Universe has in store when it comes to Dog's...Adam may find a companion yet, despite your husbands allergies

Tori'sPop, I am so glad it made you smile...I love smiles!

9:08 PM  

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