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Learning to adapt when plans change

It’s hard when we change the plans on our kiddos sometimes, isn’t it? It’s funny that my daughter can be so easy going about some things, and so rigid about others.  She’s been completely fine with the foster kids coming and going in our home.  She’s ok that we don’t know which state we are moving to yet – just that we are going.

Then there’s the other side…

If the pants she wanted to wear today aren’t clean  – meltdown!

If I said we were going to the park, but it rains – big problem.

If we don’t have her favorite stuffed animal in the car with us and we stay out till dark – watch out!

The fact that Netflix says “just a moment” and it takes more than ONE moment….bugs her and she lets me know it EVERY. SINGLE. TIME.

This weekend, she is spending time with my parents.  The plan was for her to go over there Friday and come home Sunday afternoon.

Then, my mom called a couple days ago to tell me she got tickets to a rodeo (which my daughter LOVES!).  But it’s for Sunday NIGHT.  At bedtime, actually.

Lovebug is usually ok staying out late every once in a while as long as we can adjust for it the next day.  This was pushing it a lot since it’s out late and they will have an hour long drive home, but I knew the next day could be low-key for her, and it’s the last weekend she’ll spend with my parents before we move.

So I had a talk with Lovebug to see if she would still be ok with this.  I let her know that she would be coming home on Monday instead so they could go to the rodeo.

She flipped out!  “But I was supposed to come HOME on Sunday.  That wasn’t the plan! I like to have a plan!”.

It completely messed her up.  “But I don’t know what they are going to DO at the rodeo! I don’t want to go!” (she’s been to 2 before)

I talked her through it and reminded her that she loves the rodeo, what she would see there, and that this was her weekend with my parents before we move.

She finally said, “Can I just go think about this for a minute?”

We were in the car, in a bookstore parking lot.  Ummmm, sure. So she went to the back of the minivan to think.

She came back up a couple minutes later and said she was ok with it now that she had given it some thought.

I LOVE that she self regulated that!! She just needed time to get herself used to the idea and the new plan.  If I had accepted her first answer, she would have missed out on a fun time.  She thought it through, weighed the options, and made a decision.  I was so proud of her!

Thankfully, I know my mom will monitor her activity, sensory needs, and food intake, all of which are critical to making the late night work for everyone.

What do YOU do when you have to change plans for your child?  How do you prepare them or manage the situation? I’d love to hear from you!

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