IQ Tests, The Zoo, and New Shoes

First of all, I want to thank so many of you for the wonderful feedback, support, and messages concerning my blog post last week about my son, Jack.  Sharing was scary at first, but it turned out to be very therapeutic. I may continue to share things on my blog from time to time about him or tips that work/don’t work… just giving you a heads up =)
In fact…
We went to the zoo this week for Maggie’s field trip.  She rode a camel and named it ‘Puddin.’   On the way down there I found out Jack likes the song,  “Good Vibrations” by Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch…who knew? 
Jack’s testing is finished and we should be meeting to discuss it next week.  He’s already taken an IQ test with his therapist (well, most of it…he shut down before he finished all of it) but from the responses he had given, his score was high.  I’m not sure how the school’s assessment will come out.
  Why does it matter to me? 
It shouldn’t.  
BUT it kinda does. 
 I KNOW he’s smart, like not in the normal school way- certainly not because he makes good grades or can read or anything important like that.  
I know he’s smart because of the things he says and sees- the questions he asks…the connections he makes.  
I know my kid and I know he’s smart.  
So then why do I care what a test says on one particular day at a particular time with a particular person? 
I guess because I want something that lets people in his life know, the people who don’t REALLY know him that he isn’t some hyper, daydreaming, lost kid.  I want a piece of paper that says: 
Dear So and So, 
Even if he doesn’t listen to you, or look like he cares, or learns anything useful…HE IS SMART. Somewhere inside himself…he is smart and may very well grow up and be able to do something amazing.
Does it make me petty to care what the test says?  
maybe a little.
BUT no matter what the test says, I know the truth. 
I have to remind myself all the time that it doesn’t matter what other people think, it only matters what he thinks, what we think…what the people who truly know him think.  
Ok, so moving on…
How cute are my new shoes?
They arrived in this Chocolatica’s Milk Carton…so cute.
I got mixed reviews.  People either LOVEd them or didn’t understand them.
You can find these darling shoes and many others at Mod Cloth {here}
 Before I go, 
 I will leave you with this nugget:
After the zoo and after Mellow Mushroom, I had promised Jack that we would go to Krispy Kreme and see how the donuts are made.  Only, as I entered the donut shop, I realized it wasn’t the one that has windows where you can watch the donuts being made.  I had gotten mixed up and took him to the wrong one and the right one was 45 minutes away, in the opposite direction from the way we were going.  I knew instantly it was going to go badly.
Jack looked around and started to cry, he began losing it almost immediately.  He laid in the entrance and yelled that I had lied and that he wanted to see how they make the donuts.  He repeated it over and over.  Full meltdown mode.   I had my husband  quickly take him to the car (whenever possible, removal from the trigger is best).  I came out and talked to him about his disappointment and we eventually came to an agreement.
But here’s the thing about kids like mine.  You cannot promise something and back out or change plans. You can’t expect them to understand “unforeseen occurrences.”  You can’t expect them to “get over it.”  I’ve worked with Jack on his mantra, “Go with the flow” and sometimes it helps and sometimes it doesn’t.  
This time, we got through it, just barely. 
As we drove down the road, he announced that he would not be eating any Krispy Kreme donuts.  He said he will only eat Dunkin Donuts and asked if I could find one.  I told him that I didn’t think there was one on the way home, but that I would watch just in case.  As we topped the hill going through another town, low and behold a Dunkin Donuts!  My husband whispered for me to just keep going, that we already had donuts and that Jack would get over it.  I mean, he hadn’t even seen it yet.   
I pulled in.  Jack was ecstatic.  He ordered plain donuts.  How many? 68.  I said no, he said 6.  I said yes.  As we walked out, he rubbed his hand over the top of the box and said, “nothing like Dunkin Donuts, just like home.  So good.”  


  1. I love your shoes! My daughter loves Mod Cloth. And Jack is right……Dunkin' Donuts is HOME! There is only one left in my town and it is not close to where I live or work, but is worth the Sunday morning drive for a warm glazed donut!

  2. Aaawwww! Love those shoes!!! And your Jack is just precious! I'm in love with DD too 🙂

    I read your post and wanted to thank- you for sharing your story with us. It made me sad to see all those sad faces on his papers. You are an amazing mother!! Sending you a great big cyber HUG!!

  3. When I taught a class of higher functioning students with Autism, I used "flexible tickets" (an idea from another teacher") to promote flexibility when there were changes to schedules and routines. At the end of the week, students could use their flexible tickets to buy a prize or save up till they had more tickets to buy a better prize. I had several prize baskets, each labeled with the number of tickets the prizes cost. Students were praised when they were flexible and immediately given a ticket to write their name on and put into the "flexible box." Some of the parents used this idea at home, too. The students loved it and were more apt to be flexible when things did not go according to plan. Maybe you could use this idea with Jack.

  4. I love those shoes! I have to check them out! Have you heard if Social Thinking? It's a program we use with our autistic students and it's really fabulous! It helps teach them about flexible thinking and a whole myriad of other social behaviors that students with autism often have. :-). Have a great weekend! Oh and I love Dunkin Donuts!

  5. Oh I thought of one more thing that could be potentially helpful. When we have a change to our day we call it a "ziggle zaggle" day. We explain that sometimes we have unexpected changes in our day and it's okay, just different. 🙂

  6. I completely understand your thoughts about Jack's testing. I frequently work with kids who are getting educational psychological testing. I get rather frustrated when their classroom teachers don't see ANY strengths at all. When the results come back and their IQ is high but there are just some specific needs in order to be successful, I can't help but gloat a little on the inside! No matter what the test results say, you know the truth about Jack! {super cute shoes, by the way!}

  7. Dejar Jennifer,
    Your son Jack is SMART! His brain works differently than ours. It will take some time to "work out the kinks" between the world and him, but at the end it will be all right. In the meantime, we will be gentle, patient and take it one day at a time. We will concentrate on the positives and celebrate his successes. Please help us understand him as you are his biggest advocate. Congratulations on having such a special little guy!
    A teacher who would LOVE to have him in my class. 🙂
    Conchy Marcano

  8. I'm wondering if you have ANY idea just how incredibly helpful your most recent posts are going to be to new teachers. Over the years, I have taught several kids on the autism spectrum. Understanding what they are going through, learning to recognize their triggers and finding ways to reach them can be challenging. Sharing your own experiences with Jack may be difficult, but it will help teachers and parents . . . and consequently kids with autism . . . everywhere. Thanks. Elaine

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