The purple band and the green chain #autism

by Jeannette Cripps

It’s been a bit of a busy week for D, two hospital trips for me have impacted on the after school routines for her and the activities at school really step up a gear after the May half term, what with Proms week, Sports Day and end of term activities rapidly looming.

In addition to the above, D has sporting opportunities coming up, these are great for team work and, in particular for D,  confidence opportunities and they give D a chance to visit venues we wouldn’t get a chance to.  One coming up is Bisham Abbey and today saw a return to the London Aquatics Centre (the Olympic pool) for a Panathlon Challenge.

She went two years ago and we got to go too, it was amazing.

However today didn’t start well for her.  She was anxious from the moment she woke up, whimpering and squeaking as opposed to talking, pale-faced and worried as the morning routine got underway.

When D gets over-anxious like this, there is absolutely no point in trying to hurry her and it’s a case of gentle encouragement with the hope that she will say what was wrong.  I knew in part though the reason, we couldn’t be there, due to my pesky annoying, painful post-op foot.

Last time we went, she travelled – and it was quite a long way from school – to the Aquatic Centre in the school bus and came home with us afterwards, so as well as us not being there, she knew she’d be travelling back with school.

These helped a bit:

Purple bands which I suggested we both wear, I said I’d “ping” mine if I was thinking about her and suggested she do too, I also made a quick green chain for her to wear on her wrist in the softest yarn as I said I’d be doing some crochet today.

Simple little suggestions but they really seemed to help her, along with masses of bear hugs.

Our girl came home very tired and very pale with this:

She hasn’t talked about her day and, from what she’s managed to  shout, the (long) journey there and back was very noisy and I guess she just wished she could have gone home with us, but ….oh yes, guilt trip time!!

So, I’m hoping she’ll talk about her day eventually, it might take a few days, it might take a week or it might not happen at all if she’s reminded of the stressful to and  from the venue journeys.


As we always say to her “it’s not the winning, it’s the taking part” and we’re very proud of her for doing so.    Guilt trip time again….I just wish we’d been there to see her in such an iconic venue!


Jeannette got into blogging after having my two children and after my daughter was diagnosed with autism at age 4.5, my son was subsequently also diagnosed at age 10. It helped me to read other blogs and I realized that, if I shared my experiences, it may help others too. The blog has evolved to include my wellbeing as I believe I’m a better parent to my children if I look after myself too and I review items that I feel would be of interest.Prior to having my children, I was an Executive PA for a leading insurance company.

I’m from Berkshire, UK.