Oh yes, there was definite psychological trauma today.
It all began a week or more ago when I got an invitation via Facebook for an Autism Family Bowling Adventure for local families. Though I am well aware of the heightened noise levels at bowling alleys and the scuzzy shoes one is required to don, though I know there are many flashing lights and annoying little tunes emanating from the arcade, and though I am cognizant that my kids are not the only members of the Pancake clan to have serious sensory issues, I readily accepted the invitation on behalf of my entire family. I really don’t know what came over me.
Everything else is a big blur.
I vaguely remember Danny crying about having to wear shoes other than his own, and Danny whining about having to wait so long for his turn, and Danny sniffling because there was no pizza, as I had assured him there would be. And Charlotte, not to be outdone by her brother, joined in and cried because….well, I am not sure why. Maybe to show solidarity?
Tommy was the least affected by the noise of all of us; instead of crying, he chose to run amok throughout the entire bowling alley. And when I say “entire” I mean the kid ran over every nook and cranny. He almost got knocked over by a bowling ball when he tried to get to the pins at the end of the lane. It’s really surprising we weren’t kicked out.
The rest is a hazy kaleidoscope of bowling balls stuck in the lane and nacho cheese spilled in my purse and overstimulated kids running all over the place, laughing, frolicking (other people’s kids), crying and whining (my kids).
They promised us adventure, and we got no less.
If by adventure you mean levels of stress and sensory stimuli the likes of which would surely stupefy a Navy Seal.
Finally, Bil snapped out of his shell shock and realized that there was a way out; we could escape. All we had to do was wrangle our three whining, crying, and running children and run as fast as we could to the nearest exit. We were not, in fact, prisoners of war, though I was *this close* to curling up under the plastic seats in the fetal position and begging for my Mama.
Without much fanfare, we retreived our shoes and went AWOL, hightailing it to the nearest Subway, where the kids and Bil mostly recovered.
I, however, am still twitching.
NOTE: Yes, I am fully aware that my children have inherited their sensory issues from me and Bil. Poor kids didn’t stand a chance.