April 29, 2018
Trying Something New
Anything out of the routine can unleash powerful forces of anxiety and resistance for people on the autism spectrum.
Most people in the general population also feel at least a little bit anxious when stepping out of their comfort zone.
It took countless incremental steps and years of hard work by family, teachers, therapists and helpers to get our autistic son back out in the world after a stretch of being almost housebound.
Once he was able to step out in the world again for hikes near our house, we knew we had to keep the ball rolling.
PTSD-stricken special needs parents can feel as overwhelmed as their kids. We have to overcome “clouds of doom” panic attacks to get ourselves to new destinations. I imagine caregivers with loved ones facing other challenges feel the same way.
Familiarize ahead of time. Pull out maps. Look up photos. Read descriptions online. We do a lot of things to calm our “autism-family-in-public” nerves when going to a new place.
This week’s Hike Notes are about Milagra Ridge, a fairly easy hiking site in the Golden Gate National Recreation Area.
Working past each “new-adventure anxiety-challenge” is worth the effort. Milagra Ridge has become a favorite easy hike near home.
If you’re in the San Francisco Bay Area, give this pretty hike a try. Or just get out someplace new that you haven’t visited before, even if it’s just nearby!
Please feel free to share. If you’re not able to take one of these Northern California hikes, hopefully you can enjoy the photos!
Hike Notes 1: Marin Headlands Visitor Center to Rodeo Beach
Hike Notes 2: Fitzgerald Marine Reserve
Hike Notes 3: Lands End Lookout to Mile Rock Beach
Hike Notes 4: Muir Beach to Pirates Cove
Hike Notes 5: Devil’s Slide
Hike Notes 6: Wave Organ- Crissy Field
Hike Notes 7: Tennessee Valley
Hike Notes 8: Fort Funston Beach Walk
Hike Notes 9: Milagra Ridge
Sharing insights and hiking highlights (Hikes) from the special needs caregiver front in San Francisco.