A while back, we were at a family occasion and my cousin asked me what color party favor Lizzie would like. I almost made that decision for her,  before realizing that she could make it herself.  I told my cousin to hold them up and ask Lizzie which one she wanted.  She is capable of making those choices.  Sometimes being non-verbal people don’t know that,  or they forget. Even Mom sometimes forgets.  Yesterday we took our annual trip to the Wisconsin State Fair. We had a wonderful day.  At the end of the day, Lizzie played the duck game.  Most carnivals have one.  It’s the game where you reach into the “pond” and pull out a rubber ducky to win a prize. This is the only carnival game that Lizzie can consistently do,  so we usually seek it out so she can do it.

Yesterday after her duck game,  she got a prize.  The man running the game indicated which prizes she could choose from.  I asked Lizzie while touching them,  “So do you want a ducky or a fish?” The fish got no reaction,  so my next question was,  “do you want a pink ducky or a blue ducky?” This also got no real reaction. Then I realized that the toys were attached to a pole at the corner of the both.  There was no reason Lizzie couldn’t pick out her own prize.  Dad rolled her up close and I asked Lizzie again,  “Do you want a pink ducky or a blue ducky?” I touched the prizes as I named them figuring Lizzie would reach out and grab one to make her choice. Lizzie reached down below the ducks and grabbed an emoji pillow.  It was laughing so hard it was crying. It was perfect,  and I realized I’d almost made Lizzie’s choice for her when she could make it herself. We handed her the emoji and her face lit up. Even Mom needs to take a step back sometimes and let Lizzie make her own choices.

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