When I discovered I had Asperger’s, I got a lot of answers to the “Why” questions. Such as why I had more than my fair share of childhood bruises and skinned up knees. A common autism trait is a lack of motor skills.
I learned in my research that there are gross and fine motor skills. I come up short on both. Gross has to do with movement and coordination of the arms, legs, and other large body parts and movements. Actions such as such as running, crawling, swimming, etc. I don’t know about crawling or when I learned to walk since I was way too young to remember and my Mom doesn’t remember either. As for running, the P.E. coach could usually count on me to finish last. I remember taking swimming lessons and I was not at the head of the class. I did learn to swim but it took me longer.
Motor skills come in handy behind the wheel. My learning to drive probably gave my Mom some of the gray hairs on her head before I finally got my driver’s license at 18. My Dad wasn’t involved much since he lacked what I lack too: patience. I do remember him being in the car with me on my first time behind the wheel. It was on a country road several miles safely away from the highway. I was going so slow that the cows just watched and our dog didn’t bother chasing us.
Fine motor skills have to do with smaller movements that occur in the wrists, hands, fingers, and the feet and toes. They participate in smaller actions such as picking up objects between the thumb and finger, writing carefully, and even blinking. In my elementary school years, I wore loafers with no strings attached to avoid tying my shoes. I learned to tie my shoes before I learned how to master another challenge of blowing my nose. My handwriting still reminds me of my doctor’s. As for blinking, I don’t think about it until I am at the eye doctor when she tells me NOT to blink. Then, I’ll commence to blinking like crazy.
Just recently while subbing for a special education class, I took a couple of the boys to lunch. One of them asked me to peel his banana. Bananas are on my “never eat” list and so I have limited experience of peeling them. I could not crack that thing open with my fingers. Believe me I tried! One of the other boys volunteered and cracked it right open. He had a certain kind of trick using one of his thumbs. An 8-year-old teaching a 58-year-old how to peel a banana. It’s a good thing I don’t have a deficit of a sense of humor.