Thursday, February 24, 2011

Irrational fear # 57; Thomas the train

I am sure someone out there will some how figure out a way to turn this into something offensive, but I assure you that was not my intention.. so suck it up

During my short career in special education I met many wonderful, bright, amazing students. I definitely think I learned so much more from them then they probably did from me. Because of them I see things in a different light, and also find humor in many more situations, objects, etc. than before which I think is a plus. I recently bought a card that said "You make me smile all over my face" simply because I am fairly certain that one of my students probably would have said something like that at one point. I do know that I would not have found it as hilarious as I did had I not worked in the field in the past ( I am also willing to bet the recipient wont be as entertained) It brings me back to social skills groups, and talking about feelings/what being happy looks like.

I did however begin to notice a trend while I was working with these guys. One that would probably make a pretty decent masters thesis, if it has not already been done (and if I find new research on it five years from now I am going to know you totally stole my idea, and I will probably try to sue you, so dont even think about it). At least one kid in every program that I worked in, if not more than one, had a thing for Thomas the Train and friends. It ranged from walls plastered with pictures, detailed train sets, just having the little cars, to videos and tapes.

Because of this I also have a slight connection between Thomas and his friends and some of the behaviors that I had experienced in the past. Now every time I think of Thomas I think of my Autistic students (which I promise you is not a bad thing) But here's why I am afraid of Thomas. If I ever have kids someday, and they become very entrenched in the world of Thomas I will be counting the days until that phase is over, and probably scheduling development testing in the meantime. Something about being smacked in the face with a train makes me want to keep my future children as far away from that cartoon world as possible.

Also, as someone who works in the field, I probably worry way more then normal people that my someday children are going to have special needs. While I will be equipped with the skills of how to handle that, of course I would prefer to have happy healthy children. That being said, Thomas the train will never enter my house. Even if my kids are Autistic hopefully they will have other obsessions than Thomas.

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