Monday, September 19, 2011

Hakuna Matata

Saturday was a big day for Daniel.  He had been eagerly awaiting it's arrival. You see earlier in the week I mentioned that his friend Emma asked if he wanted to go see The Lion King 3D with her.  He dropped what was in his hands and said "RIGHT NOW?"  Ready to bolt out the door and go.  That says a LOT since he still needs to have some warning for everything.  The lead time for those needed warnings has shrunk.  But it is still needed.  So to see his drop his snack and eyes go wide and practically start off to the car, well, I knew this was a BIG DEAL.

The rest of the week went along with a daily countdown to Saturday from Daniel.  Emma and her entire family, lead by mom Elizabeth, who has her own experiences with a special family member, have been a blessing to Daniel and all of us. I have written about them before here.  So the planning of this wasn't too much of a surprise, but it couldn't be more appreciated. 

Saturday morning arrived with Daniel bouncing out of bed.  His first words were "I'm going to The Lion King with Emma today!!!"  Elizabeth and I tagged along. Partially to be there in case Daniel had difficulty, and partially because we both wanted to see it on the big screen in 3D!  Daniel mostly enjoys the movies but he usually gets impatient 60 minutes in and you have to talk him through the rest.  I didn't feel comfortable leaving Emma with that.  He loves popcorn and that's a huge draw, but it can also make him feel sick and he has no control to stop eating it.  He'll dig into whatever is available, then be sick for 2 days and onerier than a wet cat.  So, I thought I had to go, to help through this. 
Daniel also has trouble with any angst in movies.  He has been known to yell out "Pooh look out!" and "Woody!!!!" With fear that his animated friends will come to their demise.  The separation of reality and movie is a very fine line.  He seems to be understanding this more, if we remind him (ahead of time).  So before we left I had a talk with him about all of the scenes in this movie that have a high anxiety level.  When he watches DVD's he only watches what he wants, and in the case of the Lion King, it's the music.  He doesn't bother with all that pesky dialog!!!  So I prepped him for the fight scenes and stampedes.

Movie time came.  I told him we'd be picked up at 2:10.  We were on the porch at 2:05 waiting on our bench.  He wasn't going to miss a moment!!!  I could feel his excitement as we waited  for our friends. We bought tickets, popcorn, drinks, got our seats where I told him "15 minutes to show time".  An important part so he knows what to expect.  I wish he'd have more of a conversation with Emma, but when he gets excited it becomes even more difficult for him.  The excitement brings out dialog from movies in echoalia that exhibit, well, excitement.  She is so sweet though, it doesn't seem to phase her.  Finally, it was time for "Our feature presentation"  which is what Daniel likes to announce to everyone.  It was a packed house!  The two week limited showing has gotten everyone out to the movies.  Daniel was singing along with the songs, (ok, so was I).   And he was better than I had EVER seen him in a movie.  He didn't get restless, he didn't ask a thousand times how long until it was over, not even once. I think he was so happy to be with them he didn't want it to end.   It was wonderful, and I was so proud of him.  We all left the theater happy.

We decided that Hakuna Matata should be what Daniel thinks about whenever he gets upset by something.  If you don't know, (but how could you NOT?) it means "no worries".  I told him whenever he makes a mistake or someone else does, instead of getting upset he should think of Simba singing that song, because you honestly can't be sad when you think, of it.  It's impossible.  As you will see in my next post, he took this to heart, and of course it is coming back to bite me!  Hakuna Matata!  Oh, and here is a picture of Emma and Daniel outside of the movie theater.  Then I'll leave you with a song....

No comments: