We have decided its time to try a real family vacation. What better place to go than Disneyland. I have a few reasons why I picked Disneyland over Disney world. Disneyland is the original, you can't beat that. I know Disney World has more to do, and it has many parent friendly attractions, but I'm not really worried about how much fun I can have, and besides, watching the kids have fun makes me happy. Another reason I chose Disneyland is I've been there before. Now matter how much they've changed it, it's still basically the same, and I want to see the same wonder in my children's eyes I had when I first went there. Yeah I can do this with Disney World, but it's not the same, not to me anyway. Another reason I want to go there is its in Sunny Southern California, and that's where I'm from and it's always nice to go home for a visit. I want to have the ability to see as many friends and family as I can while I'm out there, I may not see them all, but I'm going to try my best.
So now that we're firm on where we want to go, we have to figure out how to get there. So, lets look at the different forms of travel....from the autism point of view. First lets look at trains, I know what you're going to say, that's soooo 19th century, but for an autistic child it would be AWESOME! It's would also give us the ability to deal with anything that might come up, like a meltdown, loss of power for the iPad, food and drink at any time, but there just one problem, time. The quickest ride out there is 46 hours long, not time efficient at all. We would end up spending most of our vacation in a train, that would suck.
Next up we have driving. Driving would be great, but it could take just as long or longer, cost more, ad wear and tear on the car or we could break down on the way, which could totally suck. One of the better parts of driving is we can stop if we need to, one of the downsides is the car won't charge the iPads, and so he'd run out of juice and not be able to recharge. I think we'd also have to stop at least once for the night, so that will make the trip that much longer, or at least as long as taking the train.
I won't even talk about taking a bus, out of the question.
So, since there is no ocean between us and California, that leaves only one form of travel left... Plane. Just thinking of all that can go wrong is scary. He could have a meltdown at any point of the process. Takeoff and landing could be absolutely horrible and scare the bejesus out of him. We could be stuck in separate seats, not likely, but it could happen, and that would make calming him impossible. Logan may have such a big meltdown they would be forced to land and boot us off the plane, and we'd be stuck. Not to mention the possibility of a crash, that would suck. The plane ride is the shortest form of travel, and because of that I think it's the best way to go. We won't know until we try it. Something else may also happen that would be great, he could have no problem with the flight at all. I already know he loves roller coasters, so he may love every second of it. As soon as he's able to use his iPad again, I know he'd be happy.
This is just the start of the whole adventure, there is so much more to think about, so many different variables. We have to think of travel there and back, rooms accommodations, how much we think he can handle while where there, or if we can keep up with him. We have to think of what rides he can go on, if they'll be too loud, fast, the motion, so many things. We have to think about the food, will he want to eat what's there, or will we have to find one place that serves food he will eat. We also have to think about if he'll get stuck. There are times he gets stuck on stuff, where he doesn't want to do anything else. I worry about him getting stuck on a certain ride, not wanting to leave, I'm not so much worried about him getting stuck in one section of the park, that wouldn't bother me to much.
One thing I haven't thought of till just now writing this is his age. We've seen him advance so much in the last few months with his speech and learning, his meltdowns have been less and of shorter duration, and he's more easily able to deal with things if I talk to him eye to eye and tell him exactly what's going to happen.
With all the things we have to think about, I know we're in for an adventure. No matter how it turns out, I know we will never forget it. It's about a year away, depending on the time we decide to go, but we have so much we need to find out, so much planning to do. I hope you'll join me by reading about this trip while we're planning it. There is so much to do and think about, I bet I can even write a book about it. I guess this is good enough, for now.