Saturday, January 28, 2012

He Earned It ! ! !

Earlier this week Garrett and I went to the local grocery store together. He pushed the cart and I did all I could to protect my Achilles tendons and all the innocent customers not accustomed to Garrett watching the wheels on the cart spin as she accelerates down the aisles!
We reached the pharmacy area, and while I waited to pay for a few of his prescription refills, he wandered a short ways to a stack of toy trucks with a plastic track/road. He fell in love and asked to buy one. I told him he could not buy it that day, but then it hit me!! "Garrett, it costs eight dollars. If you can be good with Shelby this week and do your "work" (developmental therapy activities she has to have him do weekdays), then you can earn dollars. And when you get eight dollars, then Shelby can bring you back to this store and you can buy the cool truck/road/track set with your VERY OWN EIGHT DOLLARS!!!" Wow, it's not often that sort of parental brilliance hits me, but it is hard to motivate Garrett to get his "work" done, so I figured it was worth a shot!!!! I took a quick photo of Garrett with the toy and him pointing to the price. It was cute. I sent it to Grouchy and my mom and Shelby to let them in on the deal. Shelby gave it a thumbs up so we were good to go!
Garrett stared into space for a while, and I assume he was pondering the deal and trying to process it all, but he walked away without any frustration. We bought our necessary groceries and drugs and left with no problem.

So all week he has been doing good things here and there like going potty when we asked.....#1, that is, playing nicely with other kiddos at the Scottish Playground (McDonalds, and yes, we own stock in the Golden Arches, no joke!!), and buying his sisters the toys earlier in the week. So today after we knew he had earned all eight dollars, Shelby handed him each dollar and said what he did well that earned him the money:

Then Shelby took Garrett to the grocery store to buy his toy! He had his money all tucked inside his jacket pocket per Shelby's thoughtful recommendation. Here he is putting the toy into his very favorite type of shopping cart:

And this is a very proud boy pulling his new toy to the checkout counter!

Can you see the look on his face and tell he is on his tippy-toes handing the toy to the cashier. Now keep in mind that before last summer, him seeing ME putting anything on the counter to pay was a HUGE deal, so Garrett handing anything onto the counter...NO WAY!!! We think maybe he thought the cashiers wouldn't give the things back!! Took MONTHS to get past that, and here he is gladly handing over his prized toy!!!
And here is the real deal after Shelby helped set it up. Honestly, this is the best $8 toy I have ever seen!! Easy to assemble and comes with a flexible track/road and not one but TWO little AA battery-powered monster trucks, a bridge, a tunnel AND an alligator who opens and closes his mouth when the trucks pass a little lever. Oh, and a vermin who comes out of a tree stump when his lever is passed. And yes, I will send you one from our tiny market for $8 plus shipping if you really want one......yes, I am serious!!!
And in the final photo above, Garrett is in serious stimming mode.....that's Autism for focusing and doing strange movements or posture while doing so in Garrett's world. He is beginning to flap his hands and FEROCIOUSLY grinding his teeth as he watches the two trucks speed around the neat little track.

I am so proud of this little dude. And I am so thankful for all of those supporting us through his daily care, medical care and our family's mental care....ha!!!!

Thank you for taking time to duck in and check in on us! Next time you see a little kid buying something in a store, don't take for granted that child's experiences and challenges that may have finally led him to that tiny bit of greatness and independence. Garrett might as well have graduated with his PhD in Astrophysics today as far as I am concerned!!!!


1 comment:

  1. That is awesome!!

    KayTar is a SERIOUS hand=flapper, too. The messiest part of my day is rinsing her off in the tub...she gets to excitedly flapping those hands and I get a shower by association! LOL!!