Scottie dresses fancy in Atlanta

Well, February 12 was a very exciting day for Scottie. The Easter Seals West Georgia affiliate (right here in our home town of Columbus) arranged for him to go to Atlanta, our state capital, that day. They said our Rep. Vance Smith (R.-Ga.) would be recognizing Scottie for being selected Easter Seals 2008 National Child Representative… and it would all happen right there on the House floor!

The only down side in Scottie’s book was when I told him he’d have to “dress fancy” — as he calls it. Scottie really does not like to wear anything except blue jeans and a t-shirt. The shirt MUST be short sleeved and he does not care how cold it is outside — just one of the many wonders of parenting a child with autism.

I told him he would have to wear his coat and tie. He was not happy. He resigned himself to it, however. He knew it was the only way he could make the trip.

The day was filled with excitement and the usual trappings of entering a state building — lots of metal detectors and all kinds of activity all around us. When it was finally our time to enter the House of Representatives, Scottie was in awe. The room was huge and filled with many people. Our son stood shyly by Rep. Smith’s side on stage as he told the audience how amazing Scottie is.

I was beginning to wonder if Scottie was going to be able to handle all the attention. Just then, Scottie caught the eye of an adult, a total stranger in the audience who was waving at him and smiling. Scottie began to wave and smile in return. The crowd gave him a standing ovation.

It was a proud moment to say the least. After departing from the House floor, we took a tour of the “museum” on the fourth floor of the state building. This was definitely Scottie’s favorite part. There were animals and artifacts and lots of information about our state. As we walked through the displays, Scottie rattled off the Georgia state bird, state insect, state flower and state song. I had no idea he knew so much about our state already.

He left the capital with a stuffed animal from one of the representatives cradled in one arm, a package of information about Georgia in the other. “Mom, that was really fun,” he told me as we got in to the car. “And you know what else?”

“What, Scottie?” I asked.

He replied “I did not even mind being dressed fancy!”


 

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