Any kind of sports game playing on the tv is rare in our home. I like UFC, especially when Ronda Rousey and Miesha Tate were coaches and would tune in for that. I even rented the pay per view to see the showdown between the two. I used to love boxing too but after Julio Cesar Chavez retired, it just wasn’t the same.
Gustavo has developed an affinity for futbol. Something about the world cup captured us. I like watching the matches and at times am fascinated by the fans more than the actual game, including my husband and Gustavo. This is the first year Gustavo actually sat down to watch a match. Everytime Team USA missed a goal, Gustavo would sadly say, “Oh no, the United States is lost the game.” I was intrigued. When had my son become a futbol fan? Excited at the possibilities of this new interest. I asked, “Gustavo, do you like futbol?” No answer. He sipped his Snapple and went to the pantry for a Gansito. He ran so fast back to the living room at the sound of the announcer and trademark cry when a team makes a goal. Maybe it was the commentator that had initially drawn him in. We took him to an auction once. Every few months, my husband and I attend an auction of surplus things from the government and estates. It’s about an hour from home and in a bigger town than the little place we live. “We can take the kids to the park by the river after,” I told my husband, “I think they would like that. We can go eat at the buffet after.”
We had been to the auction at this location several times. I was worried about how Gustavo would do with all the people and sounds. Sometimes the microphone squealed as the auctioneer called for bids. I never understand much of it except for the dollar amount– even then, I couldn’t be sure if the amount referred to the last bid he acknowledged or the bid he was hoping to hook the next attendee with. There was an area people could sit away from the main crowd. We settled in upstairs in the less busy balcony area. Gustavo loved it.
Thinking ahead about sounds is something our family had to learn about. Any place with balloons is not a great choice, this would include graduations. Something we didn’t discover until Vanessa’s high school graduation. We had to take turns standing outside the gates with Gustavo during the ceremony. We had no idea he would have such a bad reaction to the balloons. We had been around them before.
It’s great to find fun sounds we never would have thought he would enjoy. They usually lead to some other interesting discoveries that have nothing to do with autism. I have watched several games since the USA tied that match. Tonight we watched as Mexico lost. Gustavo had long went to bed. It was just my husband and I. There was a passionate futbol fan hidden in me all along!