Thursday, May 6, 2010

"I Need Superman to Help Me"

I have grand aspirations when it comes to Taz's extra-curricular activities. I think I have to start getting that out of my mind. I signed him up for soccer. It's specifically for 3 and 4 year olds. It's only an hour per week on Saturday mornings. Dh takes him and a lot of his preschool friends are there. It's simple games like red light green light, kicking the ball back and forth with a parent, following simple directions, etc. They don't actually have scrimmages or anything.

I thought Taz would do well at this because it's outside. There's lots of room to run around. And it doesn't really matter if he gets it right cause all the kids are just learning.

Well I was wrong. First of all, Taz is beginning to see the differences between the other kids and himself. I didn't realize at the time of registration just how hard this simple process would be for him.

Number one, he has to tune out the cars going by on the road next to the park. Then he has to tune out the other kids practicing on the field. He then has to focus long enough to listen to the coach's directions, and then process what the directions are. Then he has to coordinate his body to do the tasks which requires a great deal of effort for someone with sensory issues. During each task he has to maintain attention, repress his other sensory needs, and tune out the distractions around him. For us that may be easy. But for a kid like Taz, it's incredibly difficult. It's no wonder he only lasted 15 minutes.

Not to mention the fact that he felt pretty bad about himself when he realized he was the only one who couldn't keep up. He actually said to Dh I want superman to come help me. makes me so sad to think of my poor baby struggling just to keep up with a fun recreational activity like soccer. Like I said, he only lasted 15 minutes. And that was with Dh pushing him. We are going to keep trying every week, leaving when he needs to but challenging him to keep trying.

I wasn't disappointed in Taz, it's not his fault. But it makes me incredibly sad that all the other kids can at least attempt to follow the directions and have fun. And then there's Taz. Walking along the perimeter of the field, anxious and unsure, feeling bad and needing superman to help him. Poor guy.


  1. I hear you! Jada notices those differences in herself and the other kids. It is hard on them. I certainly wish we could do something to shield them from all of this hurt.

  2. Poor guy. I remember we tried soccer at 4 years old with my son and it was a joke. He had no clue what was going on and at one point in the middle of a 'game' just ran down the field and off the field onto some play equipment because he thought it looked more interesting.

  3. My guy started taking the goal posts out of the ground and walking off with them. I can assure you the other team was surprised when the entire goal moved to a new spot. At least it was a non-competitive group and the parents caught on quickly that he has special issues. He asks to do soccer again but dh and I are not ready to try it again quite yet...

  4. Awww, poor Taz! It's hard, I know. We've given up (for now; always just for now) on "regular" extracurricular activities because Carter gets overwhelmed at the IDEA of trying something like soccer, long before we even arrive. There are a few SN programs here for swimming and karate, so we're sticking with those for now.