October 14, 2013

The new Alex?

Alex has changed…. and I think I have too.

Alex has been gone for 55 days. When I saw her at parent’s weekend she looked older to me. She was waiting for me on the sidewalk outside her dorm with a purse across her chest. This is new, she hated carrying a purse. In her purse was her swipe card to get into her dorm building and the key to her room. This was new, she never had to use swipe cards or keys before. She was wearing tie sneakers. This was new she used to wear crocs whenever she could get away with it.

Alex has grown so much, she has taken care of herself and become a college student in two short months. She is confident on campus and become accustomed to walking all over campus. Her legs looked stronger and she gave two campus tours, one for my friend Lisa from college, and one for our friends Will and Ann who were visiting from Aspen. We walked for four hours, no huffing, puffing or complaining. This is new, Alex hated to walk with me before.

We went to the salon. Alex demanded a haircut, color (she has always wanted orange hair) and an eyebrow wax. She got a new IPhone (awful Verizon experience) and we went out for dinner. I was with a mature 20 year old. This is new.

Me, I have changed too. I have gotten used to not having Alex around and forgotten some of her ways. When her phone upgrade became complicated I did not sit down and talk to her about what had happened. I did not explain to her that we had made a mistake and that although we had thought her upgrade was in September it was not. I did not explain to her that she could get a new phone but it would also involve a new number. And I did not tell her she would be getting a 4s instead of the 4 she had her heart set on. I forgot that transitions take time for Alex and she needed time to absorb this new information and I became impatient. It was not easy for either of us, yet just 55 days ago I could handle this like a pro. I forgot.

As in all things Alex, it just takes time. Six hours after the Verizon nightmare Alex was texting everyone she knew with her new phone number and bragging that her phone was better than mine. It is.

But I also made one huge tactical error. I forgot about Alex’s pride in her weight loss and reprimanded her when I found soda in her fridge. Next post….the fatal error that made our Sunday difficult.

If you have not liked our page, it is a good way to stay on top of the ups and downs of college for a person with a development/intellectual disability. I have no idea what is going to happen....but I will share the good and the bad. Please click on "The Ordinary Life of an Extraordinary Girl" now. 


  1. I love hearing about how Alex (and you!) are doing!

  2. Hello Alex!

    Love your orange hair - it really suits you and really contrasted the Verizon background.

    iPhone upgrades are really tricky.


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