Somethings never change and Johnny’s love for pumpkins other then orange still has not. Johnny might say that he doesn’t like the word different but instead of picking orange pumpkins at the pumpkin patch, he has to be on the lookout for the only green one. He is a little boy on a mission.
We decide to pick up a tradition we started two years ago and not just go to the farm and partake in all the harvest activities, but go where can actually go in the pumpkin patch and with big boots on get a bit mucky and try to pick a pumpkin right off the vine. Did you know that the pumpkin vines were prickly?
The farm we went to they even gave the kids a wagon and it was funny to watch them try to pull this wagon that seemed to be teeming with pumpkins through the farm field. They would stop and shout with excitement, “Daddy I got another one that I think is the one I want.” Johnny found at least 4 green ones while Princess was on the look out for the perfect “baby pumpkin.” Johnny kept saying it was hard to choose just one but after piling lots of candidates into the wagon, we ended up having two very unique pumpkins. Princess found a pumpkin that looks more like a large orange gourd that had these neat dots out bumpy dots all over it. She didn’t want me to use it as a Jack-o -Lantern Halloween and she still doesn’t want me to cut it up and cook it. Those tears are getting in the way unfortunately.
When we presented our choices to the farmer she actually said that some other varieties of pumpkins got into the main patch when they were seeding and planting and she was telling them the names of their pumpkins. Sorry I cannot remember them now. It seems that the green one is a new variety this year that they planted and the special one that Princess found they only charged her $2 for.
What was wonderful was how Johnny just chatted with the farmer and saying that he liked white pumpkins too. He said he liked calling ghost pumpkins and she said that’s the correct name for them. They chatted about how they both liked them better than the orange ones which are everywhere. He was really happy to hear that she agreed with him and she said she liked the green ones too because they’re different.
So all of this reminds me of a post that I did a few years ago when Johnny was in Senior Kindergarten and the EA had to tell me how she kept trying to get him to pick an orange pumpkin for Mommy to carve and he was so insistent that he needed to bring home this special one. I first wrote about Johnny’s propensity for unique squashes when he was on a field trip with school:
The farmer told them that out of all the pumpkins that were in the field, thatshe was so happy that they were able to find the pumpkins that were different and that were special. So even though Johnny likes to say, “I don’t like the word different” he likes to find the pumpkins that are set apart from all the rest. Not liking the word different I think is a loaded expression because of Autism. Johnny feels different and for some reason right now it’s very negative to him because he’s just trying to do everything all the other kids are doing. He badly wants to be the same.
The reality is in small ways he’s finding the joy in finding things that are different.
So I think this is what I need to remind him that he always finds joy in the differences in the world not the similarities.
So maybe it’s not so bad to be the only green pumpkin in the pumpkin patch.