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"Universal is awesome because it has awesome playing time and rides."

Updated: Sep 13, 2023

- Us on the Jurassic Park water ride at Universal.


One of the greatest advantages of having brothers is that you always have someone to play with. But with Calder, there is a bit of a struggle. Because of Calder's autism, his fine motor skills are not exactly the strongest. So unlike other siblings, we are unable to play sports like football, basketball, or soccer with him. Calder also always needs to be moving, so board games and card games are typically out of the picture. Calder is also significantly smaller than my brother and me so there is always a little bit of a worry that we might accidentally hurt him while roughhousing. Outside of simply being in his general radius, there are not a lot of activities the three of us can do together.

At first, it was a little difficult for my middle brother and me (Calder is the third and the youngest). We could always go out and wrestle in the grass or spend hours playing video games together. But Calder was always excluded from these activities. And he was never excluded because we sat there twirling our evil mustaches while we plotted a diabolical plan to exclude him. He just couldn't participate in these activities. Luckily, over time we have found some ways in which we can include Calder.

One of these is exercising with Calder, as in using Calder as a weight. My brother and I find that lifting Calder up high above our heads and then bringing him back down can be a very grueling workout. But Calder absolutely loves when we do this. Another activity we do, but one that our dad specializes in, is tickling Calder. Our dad will grab Calder, pin him to a soft surface, and start tickling him. Whenever he does this, Calder will start laughing like crazy. But Calder's absolute favorite, albeit limited, activity is riding roller coasters.

Like every kid, Calder loves roller coasters, but we were always skeptical about letting him ride them. However, in 2021, Calder wanted to go to Universal Studios in Orlando mainly because, at the time, he was a huge fan of Harry Potter. Our initial plan was to not take Calder on any of the roller coasters because we assumed that he would just want to walk around the Harry Potter section. But after that section started to fill up, we decided to take Calder out to the rest of Universal. Our dad was the first to suggest taking Calder on a roller coaster. Our mom initially shot down his idea, but she later reconsidered and so we took Calder on two rides: the Spiderman ride, which unfortunately we could only ride once because of the line, and the Jurassic Park water ride, which Calder got to go on repeatedly because it had no line. For the last half hour we spent at the Park, Calder and our dad went on that ride nonstop leading to Calder having one of his favorite memories of visiting "Awesome Universal."

1 Comment

Megan Bean
Megan Bean
Jun 23, 2023

Oooh please let Calder & your family know that when we finally get to hang out w you all again, I‘d happily join the Calder Coaster Team at Awesome Universal!

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