“Did you know that meltdowns are involuntary acts most often caused by overstimulation and are outside the control of the person in question? Meltdowns should not be confused with tantrums, which are willful acts meant to manipulate.” -Lost and Tired (www.lostandtired.com)
My son has a wonderful, sunny disposition. He has a kind and caring heart. He has an unadulterated joy that emanates from him as he dances through life. He has a vivid imagination and he joyfully accepts the revolving role as the main character of his fantasy world every single day. It is captivating to watch. However, he also weathers many emotional storms that can quickly dampen that sunny personality. Tears flow easily with Ben, often for seemingly no reason. But, make no mistake, there is always a reason. He cries when life becomes overwhelming. He when cries too much is going on around him and he just can’t handle it any more. He cries when plans change and things that he expected and needed to happen don’t happen. Normally his tears come and go quickly. Ben has learned to recognize his feelings. When he starts to become sad or upset, he knows how take action and calm down. However, there are times when disappointment is too great, or when his sensory systems overwhelm him, and a meltdown occurs. In those moments when my son’s body succumbs to his emotions, I try to do everything I can as a parent to help him. I try to calm, distract, and soothe. I give him a safe space to work through his feelings. At the end of an episode, I am exhausted and relieved that the ordeal is over. It is human nature to view the world through our own perspective, but the other day I had the rare opportunity to view the world through Ben’s.