Wednesday 28 June 2017

WonderfulWednesday: Father's Day at Sea via @bobscartoons

Still from an animated memoir by The Telegraph cartoonist, Bob, of his family’s first holiday

This month's wonderful Wednesday share was a link emailed to me by my husband.  It's a fantastic animated memoir by The Telegraph cartoonist, Bob, of his family’s first holiday which happened to fall on Father's Day this year.   Bob's daughter, Poppy, is a happy, cheeky, determined little girl who also happens to have cerebral palsy and epilepsy.  This year the family went on holiday and found that despite the difficulties it was well worth going.

Holidays in our family have always been important, but it would be a lie to say they were always easy and stress free.  Both our boys have autism, David is pre-verbal and Anthony also has a diagnosis of ADHD.  Despite being only four years old, their younger sister has learned a lot already about looking out for her older brothers, but ultimately she's still a young girl and has all the wonderful dramas of her age too.

I was very worried about taking the boys on a ferry crossing the last time we went to France.  And one year going to see my brother and his family in the USA I was so worried about David that I went to the doctor to see if we could get some medication to 'calm him' or knock him out even in case it looked like we would be having a series of meltdowns.  The last thing we wanted to happen was for the aircraft to be grounded due to our son.  As fate would have it, David was prescribed melatonin a few years later.

But as yet, we've had no real disasters on holiday.  Instead we and the children have learnt what works, and what doesn't work for us.

David can struggle on a beach, but if we take a tent he can cope and we can be a family, at least until he runs off.  And when it's time to leave, it's OK to do so.  We don't have to conform to how long we think we should stay somewhere.  When the boys are done, we know it's best to move on.

We need space, private space.  Despite being a family of five, if we are staying in an apartment, we'd rather spend a week in one that can sleep seven than two weeks in one that's to sleep five because we need the space.  The boys need space to themselves and time to process and 'chill' everyday. Busy poolsides are a worry, but secluded areas are not. I can watch all the kids and keep them safe.  Bob - we can't do kids clubs either.

And when we get it right, great things happen.  Like the year that Anthony got over his fear of fireworks - it could only have happened at Disney.

Our 'Yay for the holidays?" has slowly become "Yay for the holidays!" but it's taken a while to figure what works for us enough to truly enjoy them.

If you've not see Bob's animated memoir, head over here for a view.  It's delightful, inspiring and very Bob.


  1. This is so lovely! We've vaguely thought about a cruise in the past, maybe we should give it a go!?
    Thank you so much for sharing on #AccessLinky

  2. This is lovely. I wouldn't have seen it without you, thank you

  3. Great read - I completely relate to needing space. We thought we'd give eurocamp a go last year as friends were going. Total disaster - one week in a small caravan with four kids and busy noisy pools meant there was nowhere to properly unwind - I hadn't felt so stressed in ages. Never again! #accesslinky

  4. This is such an inspiring read. We are going to Disney World this year and I have so many concerns and worries. I think I too will need a trip to the doctors for advice. But saying that we have done quite a few 'home' breaks now and I think we know how to make them work. I actually find our kids behave better when away than when at home.

    Thanks for linking up with Small Steps Amazing Achievements

  5. Awww how lovely. Im finally managing to take my little one on holiday this year and I cant wait
    thanks for linking to #ablogginggoodtime

  6. I think we know how to make them work. I actually find our kids behave better when away than when at home.

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  7. What a wonderful post. I think we are still very much trying to figure out what works for our whole family on holiday. Last time we all went we had to cut it short - even though it meant missing being on holiday for one of their birthdays. But I guess that was knowing their needs too - knowing that we had to go home. #accesslinky

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