Saturday, May 17, 2008

Terrifying Train Tunnel

We took Matthew to Burke Lake Park, a local park that has a train that runs through it. Matthew went on this ride several times last summer and while he didn't love every minute of it, he surely didn't do what he did today. There is a dark tunnel that the train goes through twice and Matthew totally freaked out both times. He shook uncontrollably (like a scared dog during a terrible thunder storm) and held his breath while going under the first time. The train looped around and we warned him we were going through again...he shook/bobbed and had a horrible expression on his face. It was very scary for us b/c Matthew has a hole in his heart (VSD) and has had absence seizures so we were afraid he might have a seizure or a even heart attack. The weird thing is, he's been through tunnels on the Metro and they don't phase him at all. John says maybe it's b/c we were in the open air, it was very dark, and the horn/whistle were blowing loudly. Needless to say, we won't be going back there. This is the pic I took before we reached the tunnel.


Tricia said...

I found your blog through ASA-NV. I would think his reaction was a sensory meltdown. My son has had some very bad ones when we've been out in public, not any significant ones at home. The most severe one took place when we were touring Luray Caverns on a guided tour. It was miserable. My son was spinning around in circles and counting to 100 very, very loudly...eyes rolled back into his head and unable to respond to me. That was over a year ago and nothing like that since then. I think it gets better as they get older. My son would've needed ear plugs for that train ride though.

Anonymous said...


Don't be so sure that you can never go back. One year ago, Peter went to a birthday party at one of those indoor playgrounds with the massive inflatable slides & moon bounces. It was disasterous. He would not enter the room, when dragged in, he would try to escape. We thought, at that time, that we could never return to this type of place.

Today we went to a party for the same neighborhood boy - different location, but identical type of play center. Peter was amazing. There was about a 3 minute warm-up period while he studied the room and processed the perspective fun... then he was UNSTOPPABLE.
Check out:

After the bouncing & sliding, Peter enjoyed pizza and birthday cake - both of which were rejected at last year's party.

Time will bring amazing surprises!


Betsy said...

We love going to Burke Lake. Our favorite is the mini-golf, but they like riding the train too. Unfortunately they hate it when the honk the horn in that tunnel. I wonder if we complained if they would not do it when we are on there.


Robin said...

Another thought is the exhaust fumes from the engine hang in these tunnels. I believe our kids get overwhelmed from toxins more quickly and this causes an even greater sensitivity to sounds, clothes etc.

Just a thought....