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Old 01-01-2013, 12:21 PM   #1
iluvmickey2008
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Going Solo with DS6 (nonverbal) and DS3?

I really, really want to go in 2014. My sons are 5 and 2 right now. The 5 year old was diagnosed with Mixed Expressive and Receptive Language Disorder (or MERLD), so he doesn't always understand things and cannot speak and has had major tantrums in the past. Some of his symptoms do mirror autism, but that has been ruled out. With that being said, he has made tremendous progress in signing, some words, and his understanding has increased greatly in the last few months.

The 2 year seems like he is developing normally, although extremely shy and has tantrums when he doesn't want to do something - these are minor tantrums, typical for a 2 year old.

I'm not sure my husband is totally onboard with going. So I told him that I'm going with or without him!!!

I do not see DS5 being a problem even with his MERLD. The DS2, I'm not sure about yet!

Has anyone taken 2 children (one with special needs) solo? I thought about going with someone else, but I have a feeling that my husband will end up going; I would prefer it to be just us because this will be our first "real" family vacation. I also thought about taking them each separately, but they really set a good example for each other. Plus I would miss the other one too much!

But then I try to think practical - how to balance a tray of food while keeping an eye on a 6 year old and a 3 year old; or if one needs to go to the bathroom; or in line waiting for the bus?
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Old 01-01-2013, 01:24 PM   #2
kirstenb1
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I haven't done anything big like WDW solo with 2 kids. And I wouldn't with 2 young children like you have. We have a 14 yr old and 7 yr old (she has ASD). With the age gap, I've been able to do solo day trips to Busch Gardens, the zoo, etc. Since the 14 yr old was 10 or so, she's been a huge help with her sister. I can leave the 2 of them while I wait in line for lunch, etc.

But I think you've nailed an issue. As you point out, how would you juggle the kids and a tray? The younger child may well still be in a stroller, etc.

To be honest, I'd do a solo trip to a resort, where the kids could be in the water at a pool, or the beach. It'd be easy to coordinate naptime, and just chilling out playing with some toys in the room. But at WDW, I always feel some pressure to get our "money's worth", kwim? And we even have DVC. But still, the park tix are so expensive. There, DH takes our older dd, and they stay all day. With our younger dd, she and I get there when the park opens. She's usually okay for 3 or 4 hrs, then she's overstimulated, and done, so we go back to the resort.

Gosh, I sound like such a pessimist!! Anyway, why not try a weekend trip somewhere local with the kids solo? That would probably give you a good idea if you can do WDW solo with them.
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Old 01-01-2013, 03:10 PM   #3
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A year makes a HUGE amount of difference and you really do not have to book as far ahead as most people do. MOST of the time we book months and months out...but last trip we were less than a month out, during a busy time and got pretty much what we wanted ....so.....I would wait and see. While I would not hesitate to take my typical 6 year old, and maybe even add a spare two- year old if we had one, a child with special needs is VERY different. I would want to be very sure that your 6 year old is going to listen and stand nicely beside you in lines, while you deal with a toddler, get food, change a diaper or help a toddler in the bathroom etc. I woulds also want to see how your toddler is as a three year old. For us, our typical developing boys were harder at three than at two. At this point the trip does not sound very fun and maybe not even safe. Maybe getting DH on board would be a great idea.
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Old 01-01-2013, 03:44 PM   #4
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You can easily put them both in a double stroller. My 2 (both autistic) will be almost 6 & 8 when we go for Spring Break and they still fit into their stroller even if it's not as roomy as it once was. They've been over the weight limit for our front/back Graco DuoGlider for over a year and, as long as we keep it well oiled, it rides great & turns easily with no problems, With your little one being so young, you probably don't even have to worry about that.
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Old 01-01-2013, 05:28 PM   #5
iluvmickey2008
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Thanks! Maybe I'll just give it some time. I'm just so excited. I'd love to book it far in advance (like today!), but I'll wait. My DS5 (special needs) actually does listen to me while we are out now. He has made such huge progress over the past few months, that I got excited. In fact we when got their Christmas pictures taken, the photographer thought I meant that the 2 year old was special needs because you couldn't even tell with DS5 because he was listening and following directions. I guess I fear of the way that they will act after 4 or 5 days after the initial "excitement" wears off.

When we go to our local amusement park, DS5 is great all day. DS2 is cranky, but he was only 18 months over this past summer when we went. That is young. That is why, even though it is free for him now, I would never take my DS2. I don't think that he could handle it. I don't think I could handle him!

I guess in the meantime I will keep talking to the hubby.
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Old 01-01-2013, 06:30 PM   #6
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If I were to take them anywhere, it would be Disney with a double stroller.
By next year the little one will probably be an easy child to take places, I was amazed at how easy my younger children after the first one who had language delays. (she also didn't understand people, couldn't communicate well and had tantrums)

I think if you plan well for the weather- if you go in a hot season schedule yourself to be in air conditioned areas a lot in the middle of the day, and I let my kids nap in the stroller when tired. If you are solo with the kids just know you aren't going to get everything done. I think if your husband goes with you you will be fine.
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Old 01-01-2013, 07:38 PM   #7
iluvmickey2008
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Quote:
I was amazed at how easy my younger children after the first one who had language delays. (she also didn't understand people, couldn't communicate well and had tantrums)
This is nice to know! So far DS2 has been fairly easy, listens to directions well, talking, etc. However, he has been at a stage where he doesn't like the stroller, doesn't like to walk and doesn't like to be held! LOL!! I'm sure it is just a stage plus we have each had bronchitis and the flu during the past month so he has not been a happy camper.

They really compliment each other, which is why I want to take them both at the same time. DS2 is very shy around strangers and DS5 is extremely friendly (even though he cannot speak much) so DS2 follows his lead. DS2 is outgoing physically (like crawling through a tunnel at a playground); DS5 won't do things like that on his own, but will follow DS2.
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Old 01-02-2013, 10:59 AM   #8
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I don't know why your DH doesn't want to see his kids enjoying WDW but if he won't go why not take your older DD and DGS
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Old 01-02-2013, 11:50 AM   #9
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We always get a double stroller easier to keep track of them and keeps my one DS (fragile X syndrome and autism) from running away. With meal time we always ask the big ones to hold a little ones hand and it makes them feel like they are doing a job for mommy and daddy. When I run out af hands or have stuff in my hands like a tray I ask them to hold my shirt or my purse so I know they are next to me and can feel them. Or you can ask a CM to carry the tray for you. They will help you out if you ask.

Trust me I think you will be surprised at what you can do when it is time. I always worry about a trip by myself but always manage to surprise myself and pull it off with no problems.
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Old 01-02-2013, 12:53 PM   #10
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To the OP: have you tried something local by yourself? Even a trip to the mall for an afternoon? Or a local park or zoo or small amusement park? Try out some strategies somewhere small and local (no big travel expense) to get a hang of doing things solo - handling restroom breaks, meals, etc. I'd definitely give that a try before tackling a big trip like WDW. Good luck!
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Old 01-02-2013, 03:30 PM   #11
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Restroom breaks would be of no issue either. On goes, all goes, and we all share same stall. They also have companion restrooms that would be useful for you. You could also use the first aid stations or baby care centers if needed.
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Old 01-03-2013, 01:35 PM   #12
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I am going to be a party pooper but I would say it is in the best interest of your marriage to choose a vacation you are all happy with.

That being said, why isn't he interested? What DOES he like? Can you play up those aspects? "Oh, honey, don't you know they have golf? You could play around one afternoon while I play with the kids in the pool."
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Old 01-03-2013, 07:11 PM   #13
iluvmickey2008
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Believe it or not, he doesn't like to go on vacations and thinks Disney is way too expensive. He is very much a home-body and he thinks that the boys should be older when we go to Disney. However, being that I've been to Disney several times, I think I know what to expect (and what not to expect!) from the boys. This will be a vacation about them and for them. So if they want to ride the TTA all day, then we will. Well, maybe not!

He did agree to go on a long weekend to Busch Gardens Williamsburg this summer! Amazing!! When he sees how much fun, I'm sure he'll want to do Disney. He does love Star Wars, so I keep talking about that. He even watched some rides on youtube the other day. He may be coming around!!
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Old 01-03-2013, 08:39 PM   #14
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Hopefully he will come around to your point of view but if he does not, go for it anyway!

I use an ECV and have been solo so I know about not having enough hands to do the counter service tray thing. I can do it but when it is crowded it is more difficult, However, the CMs working at the counter service spots almost always offer to help carry my tray. And one told me, that if no one offered, just ask and they will be glad to help - told me he likes to help with trays as it makes a quick break in the routine. Also, when I do try to carry the tray and drive the ECV, most often kind strangers appear out of no where and demand that I let them help.

So if you go and need a hand with the tray, just ask, you may just make someone's day better because that person got an opportunity to be of service.
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Old 01-04-2013, 11:52 AM   #15
kirstenb1
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iluvmickey2008 View Post
Believe it or not, he doesn't like to go on vacations and thinks Disney is way too expensive. He is very much a home-body and he thinks that the boys should be older when we go to Disney. However, being that I've been to Disney several times, I think I know what to expect (and what not to expect!) from the boys. This will be a vacation about them and for them. So if they want to ride the TTA all day, then we will. Well, maybe not!

He did agree to go on a long weekend to Busch Gardens Williamsburg this summer! Amazing!! When he sees how much fun, I'm sure he'll want to do Disney. He does love Star Wars, so I keep talking about that. He even watched some rides on youtube the other day. He may be coming around!!
We have season passes to BG Williamsburg and Water Country USA. This is exactly the type of "test run" I was trying to suggest. If you have enough time, try to get over to Water Country too; it's a great park with lots of rides/splash zones for all ages.
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