I went to my second basketball game last night. I did so much better at staying calm in all the sudden lights and sounds. I was so excited to go and proud of how I handled it.
My first time at a Raptors game was very hard. Despite being tethered to Nelson (my service dog that helps me stay calm when my impulses take over) and noise cancelling earphones I could not get my body to my seat. I tried everything to calm myself.
Enter my new friend Zach Miller, who was there when I needed a place to unplug my stuck sensory system. He created opportunities for me to encode all the sensory information in a way I could handle and still enjoy the game. Just my filling up to before meltdown then a break somewhere quiet and plain looking allowed me to get happily encoded to the environment. Zach transformed what could have been my last game, to me being a lifelong fan. He is an angel among men.
This game was about 45% better. Zach took care of us again and made sure I was as calm as possible.
I want to thank Zach and Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment for changing my life and helping me be a sports fan. They are amazing people.
Forever a fan,
(Courtside shot below is from our first game at the end we were graciously offered to see what courtside looks like, all others are from last night after getting settled. He chose all images.
Jordyn also asked me to share this video of him after making it to his seat without “Rocky freaking out” which was his goal)