We had a very good resource person. For no particular reason, i will call her "Janice" here.
i carefully asked her title/specialty/how to refer to her here, but unfortunately didn't write it down. She specializes in autism. To show you how good she is, she said she brought an assessment for both Asperger's and autism, but soon after meeting Max, she knew there was no point in bringing out the Asperger's assessment.
The RoutineWhen she set up the appointment last week, or the week before, she said the customary routine was to meet at a library closest to the patron. Accordingly, we set up 10:30 for yesterday morning.
In retrospect, a different library, with which Max was unfamiliar would have worked better. Our local one has associated routines, and meeting for a multi-hour asessment isn't among them.
Following expectations is extremely important to people like Max.
That MorningWhen Janice called as i was finalizing my get-out-the-door preparations, i kinda panicked. She said she was going to be 5 (or was it 10?) minutes late.
i don't value my own knowledge enough. i knew i could be prompt this time (that's a continuing issue for me/us), but i also knew that Max would be better off if Janice was already in place when we arrived.
We arrived a little early.
Max went into his "We're at the library" routine: you find the video and the book, you check out, you go home.
i was able to recall him. i said, "Max, i'll be at this table while you have your assessment. Do you want to wait here with me until Janice comes?" He stood by the table.
Our meeting room was on the path to the door out. He did not want to go into it when Janice came. He entered it, yes, indicated that he'd prefer i stay inside with him, then shooed me into the doorframe as he ran to the car.
Janice and i stood where we could see him and discussed how to proceed.
Was There Any Hope for an Assessment Today? Any Possibility He Would Come In?
She wondered if he would leave. Max has in fact tried once to walk from our home to the church, between the house & the library, and more recently tried to walk home from church, but i didn't think he was going to just then.
Usually, as last Friday & all those times at VSA, you just wait him out. Friday, he hadn't wanted to go in to speech, so i walked on up to the building, waited 5 or 10 minutes, then came back & asked if he was ready. Max was quite ready to leave the car & come in then.
Assessing MaxJanice wasn't sure why our intake specialist wanted a full assessment - probably because he was so uncertain as to what to make of our
Actually, the assessment looked like fun to me.
Max did not want the door closed. He did not want me to leave. So i kept to writing bill-checks and reading a novel i'm too familiar with - i didn't get out my colored pencils, which would've been too distracting. (Actually, the photography was somewhat distracting. Sorry!)
Possibly the most interesting thing to me was that if the directional instructions involved a female figure, Max would refuse to comply. Male figure, neutral images, ok, female figure, no. One figure was ambiguous "Put the block in front of the girl." "No." "Um, well, okay, it's a boy. Put the block in front of the boy." That was one fast-moving block!
Total Timeframe: Two and One Half HoursThat includes before we could actually get started, and the time involved for me to take Max to Boom & return. Janice told me that our intake specialist - may not be the best description, but it works for now - would be our next contact. i should expect his call in maybe a week or so.
Before LeavingAfter our meeting was over & Janice had left, the chief duty librarian came to see me. He told of an incident involving Max at a time when i hadn't been there; he'd come with MyGuy. Max had shoved another patron when upset, and the librarian warned me that while he understood that these things will happen, nevertheless they can't be tolerated and such incidents might lead to Max's being banned from the library.
Boom hadn't recalled such an incident. MyGuy remembered it, though. That "other patron" had been Boom. (Better one of us, but still not acceptable.) Max had been powerwalking agitatedly, as if looking for something he couldn't find (OH how words could've helped him then!). Then, when he gave up & was ready to check out, all
the kiosks were busy. More frustration. . . .