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Mary received the news that she passed the road test, and will be taking driving instruction from the local rehabilitation driving program. They think she needs 40 hours of on-the-road instruction. They have to send it into the state for approval, but it should start soon. This is a huge step for Mary and for our family.

Our friends and family have often commented about how much time we spend carting our kids around. But if we didn’t, where would they be now? We do so much for them, but the goal is independence. The goal is for them to do it themselves. It always has been. The issue with autism is that it just takes much more time, much more hands on direction, much more intentional forethought (if possible – sometimes we can’t forethink everything). It is so great, though, when they figure things out for themselves.

I think that Mary is better at creative thinking than Will is.

Will is much more rigid and he always wants to do everything right. He wants to be able to predict how the next thing will happen, and he has a little difficulty when things don’t go as planned. But that may be one of things that helps him understand computer languages. He has gotten much better at being flexible. He has gotten lost a few times in his new city and he has figured out how to get around. Smart phones with maps are wonderful. He says Google Maps is not so accurate. This week he has to figure out what to do about his car – it seems the starter is going out. We are helping with suggestions, and his father will drive over tomorrow to look atΒ  and help him.

Mary, on the other hand, is always thinking about her goals. One of her goals is independence – being able to take care of herself and have her own apartment. So she has set about to learn cooking, laundry, and cleaning. She rides the bus to some of her appointments. Sometimes when the next bus is coming in 45 minutes, she decides to go out for Chinese or burgers. Or go to the thrift store. She is more creative in her thinking.