It’s amazing it’s already been 6 weeks since I moved. In many ways the flat move has been a huge success.
I am back to work, I am living on my own (ish) and everything is going in a positive direction.
For the last week we have focused on routines and it’s been good.
Being home alone feels like being in an exam. There is a constant pressure due to all the rules I need to keep in mind.
We’re using 3 overlapping techniques to help reduce the pressure.
The first is routine cards for morning and evening routine. We found some on the Sesame Street website! We cut them out and laminated them and stuck them on my door. I find it very useful (and reassuring) to have a definitive ‘right thing to do’ noted down. They work well and bring some structure and sameness to my mornings and evenings. They are also visual, easy and fun.
Secondly were using a mini A4 sized whiteboard to make a daily ‘Schedule’. I write it out early each morning and it has all the key activities of the day on it. It’s useful to have a plan and it’s more portable than a timetable.
The timetable is my third technique. It’s a huge 10 foot by 6 foot timetable on my lounge wall. It’s has all the information on the tasks I need to do each day, plus who’s visiting when. I use the timetable to inform the schedule :)
Together they all add up to better structure, and with the structure comes far less anxiety and stress.
It’s helping. Less anxiety also means some better speech. It’s very up and down but speech is coming back slowly.
This week we had the new babysitter everyday including two visits alone with her.
This was a success. It wasn’t always comfortable (during the second visit alone I pushed a bit far and ended up fighting an anxiety attack for a few hours, doh) but it’s great progress.
The aims of the external support is too bring consistency to things like meals. This is happening. I am way happier to have stable sameness over excessive daily variation.
This is all good. It takes some of the pressure of my friends and also gives me more autonomy.
This coming week is more of this same (!). Same routines and plans and hopefully more time alone with the new babysitter and that time to start being more relaxed.
One big thing is that I have now made the decision I won’t be returning to harrow. I’m putting my old flat up for sale and have applied to have the support agreed in Harrow moved to Romford.
This week should be good. The highlights will be a completely solo trip into work (via access to work arrangements) and meeting my manager for dinner to plan a big team trip to the USA.