Elopement and Coyotes

Elopement: to run away.

Coyote: wild animal that charged Colin this weekend.

Yep, you read that right.  A large coyote charged at my four year old this weekend.

We live next my family's farm.  We went on a walk Saturday. The boys are never, ever out of our sight, especially when we are outside.  They stayed within a few steps us as we walked along the paths in the woods.  We made it to an open field.  I would say it's about the length of a football field. 

Colin ran up a little ways in front of us.  Because we were in the open field, we could see him, and let him stay a little ahead of us.  He would turn around every few seconds to make sure that we were still behind him, which is a good  (and new) skill. 

Elopement, or running away, is often a problem for autism families.  Many kids on the spectrum don't have an understanding of boundaries.  They also have no fear.  "Getting lost" isn't really a concern for them.  For this reason, we have to keep eyes on Colin 24/7.  If he were to get away from us, he would not respond to us calling his name.  He would be lost. 

As we got to the edge of the field, we caught up to him.  I was back a little ways with Finley.  Curtis caught up to Colin.  We started walking up the hill. 

Curtis and Colin made it up the hill and around a little bend, just out of my view.  It was at that point that a huge coyote came charging down the road, right toward Colin.  Curtis grabbed Colin and put him behind him.  He pulled his gun out, but the thing turned and ran toward the interstate. 

He looks down at me and calmly says, "there's a coyote up here."

Finn flipped out and started crying.  It really scared him.  After Curtis told me what exactly had happened, I was a little scared too.

Looking back, we think the coyote had been at the top of the hill.  It had seen Colin walking just up ahead of us. And it thought he was something little, and alone.  It was coming after him. 

How scary? Ahh...

This is why elopement can be scary.  What if we hadn't stayed right with Colin? What if he got away from us and went into the woods by himself?  What if I blinked and he got out of my sight? 

He is four and he's fast.  I was running at a complete sprint the other day just to catch up to him as we played in our yard.  I have to be in decent shape in order to keep him safe.  I have to be able to run at any given time. 

Asic running shoes and guns, ready to go at our house! Locked, loaded, and running.  Always. 


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