The Great Electric Vacation

We’re packing to go away for a few days. We’re going to a family reunion out of state. It’s a five or six hour drive. If my memory serves me correctly, the back seat of my parent’s car, occupied by my older sister and I, descended into a danger zone of destruction worthy of the moniker “WWIII”. So I’m a tad nervous. I need to remember to pack the med kit.

My Older Minion has always been a passive guy. His autism not only gives the Younger Minion a break from most sibling violence, it’s actually helped them become pretty close. I’d say they share everything, but it’s primarily because OM typically avoids most social interaction. If YM wants something that OM has, he’ll give it to him without hesitation. Mostly.

We’ve been working with therapists over the last decade or so to build OM’s understanding of social skills and teach him to express himself more. The downside of this for YM is that he is learning to say “No”. No major league brawls to talk about yet, but we haven’t attempted any long road trips until now.

Will I need to create a duct tape border between OM-land and YM-ville across the back seat? I’m stretching my shoulder in preparation of all the behind the seat reaching I’m expecting to do.

We don’t have a fancy minivan with video screens on the backs of our seats. I’m actually happy about that. I’d prefer to listen to music and play games with each other along the way. When the batteries run down on their devices, there won’t be much choice in the matter. They do have their own iPads. OM’s is a newer one that he won in a raffle and it has his communication Apps installed. YM has the older one that was handed down after the prize arrived last holiday season. They trade them back and forth fairly seamlessly depending on what App is installed on which one. Cross your fingers, toes, eyes and spleens for a safe and gentle exchange with minimal whining or bloodshed.

I may be freaking out over nothing since they are really good kids. But, a six hour drive can bring out the demons in all of us. Maybe I’ll keep them up all night packing so they sleep the entire way. Excuse me while I wring my hands maniacally and plot my Evil Dad schemes…

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