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Tantrum Tot gives “Big Boy” School a Thumbs Up!


The Tot has three days to prepare to start school on Monday, so I thought it would be good to start preparing him. I figured that I can start talking to him over the next few days, and trying to get him used to the idea.  At the very least, it wouldn’t be a complete surprise; I should have known better; I should have seen this coming!

Tot had his head on the pillow in bed next to me when I started telling him that in a few days he is going to get go to school with the Little Man.

“You are going to get to go to Big Boy School.”

The Tot looked at my blankly, so I was not sure what his reaction was going to be. I used the word school, to which the tot usually starts him whining, “I don’t want school.” He didn’t say anything so I continued.

“You can go to the same school as brother, do you want to do that?”

No response.

“When its time to go the big boy school, you will go with brother on the school bus.”

A few moments passed as he was looking at me fairly expressionless. Then he let go of his sippy cup with one hand and give me a thumbs up sign!! I didn’t even know he knew what thumbs up meant.


A big smile spread across the Tot’s face, he jumped out of bed and yelled, “Yay! I want to go on the bus. I need my book bag.”  FULL SENTENCES!!! He went to the window, pushed the curtain aside, and screamed. “I want the bus.”

He thought there would be a bus waiting for him outside our house right NOW.  I tried to explain (what was I thinking—I wasn’t apparently) that it in three more days.  He insisted he wanted the bus.

“You can’t get on the bus now, its nigh time”

“The sun is asleep?”

“Yes, Baby the sun is sleeping.”

“No,” the Tot started screaming, “I want the bus. I want sun to wake up!”


It’s going to be a long three days. But if he stays this happy and excited to go and actually gets on that bus without throwing a fit, I will be happy.

Jeannie Davide-Rivera

Jeannie is an award-winning author, the Answers.com Autism Category Expert, contributes to Autism Parenting Magazine, and the Thinking Person's Guide to Autism. She lives in New York with her husband and four sons, on the autism spectrum.

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