Christopher’s autism makes it hard for him to understand the feeling of other people, he can’t empathize. He can’t understand metaphoras, sarcasm, or even love or anger. He shows a growing of independence throughout the whole novel. Especially, through the rebellion against his father by disobeying, his single trip to London or his investigations about the dead Wellington, which brought him the truth about his mothers’ supposed dead. But he didn’t just grow in his confidence, but also in little things, like his sights, his dislike about public toilets or small spaces. One example of a changing of Christopher’s sight is, how he sees people. He tells that when he meents people, he runs through his memory to find out if he knows them.
He whatches them for weeks without talking to them until he knows they’re safe. When he travels on his own through England, he has to talk to people. He is very afraid of the “Stranger Danger” and he holds his Swiss Army knive in his pocket, but he grows beyond his limits and talks to them to get help with the way to his mother. Christopher hates the colors yellow and brown. Christopher compares his hatred for certain colors to all the arbitrary choices people make in life. If we didn’t make choices, he reasons, nothing would ever happen. For example, when the father makes him some Gobi Aloo Sag for dinner. Gobi Aloo Sag is yellow so Christopher puts red food coloring in it before he eats it. One of the reasons for his dream of becoming an astronout is that there doesn’t exists something like yellow or brown. Every morning, Christopher looks out of the window in the bus, counting the cars and their colors. Three or Four red cars in a row would make a “Good Day”, five red ones make a “Super Good Day”. Four yellow cars in a row make a “Black Day”.
On Black Days Christopher refuses to speak to anyone and sits by himself at lunch. Chrsitopher doesn’t care that his system is not very logical, but the sense of order it gives him makes him feel save. When father hits him, because he found the book, Christopher doesn’t show an extrem emotional reaction. But immediatly after the fight, he tells about the unrelated topic of how much he hates yellow and brown, which both disgust him. He might not link this feeling of disgust with the fight with his dad, but the placement of the explanation of his feeling of disgust, right after the fight, shows the reader indirectly, what Christopher felt in the section before. But we can clearly see a change in his disgust and hate of yellow and brown. He doesn’t stop hating thise colors, but he learns how to live with them. The best example is, when he moves in with his mother in an apartment, which floors are painted brown. Also, his fear of small spaces grew back. When Christopher tells about his dream of becoming an astronout, he mentions that small spaces are no problem for him, as long as he doesn’t have to share it. What happens, when he has to share a limited space is explained in one of the letters that the mother writes to him, in which she explains, why she left the family and she tells about a situation in a store.
Christopher became frightened by the number of people in the store, and when Mother tried to move him he started screaming and broke two mixers by knocking them off a nearby shelf. Then he wet himself. He wouldn’t stop screaming and they had to walk home because Mother knew he wouldn’t want to get on a crowded bus. In another situation like this, the school bus broke down, so the mother had to drive Christopher and sone other kids home. Christopher was overwhelmed by the situation, he jumed out of the moving car and hurted his head. In chapter 191, he is challenged, by going through a crowded and smelly underpass tunnel. While going through this tunnel, his head starts hurting from all the signs. But instead of loosing the control about himself, like he did in the store situation a few years ago, he sits down outside a café and does a math problem, called “Conway’s Soldiers” in his head to calm himself for over two hours. Lastly, he also learned how to live with his disgust of public toilets. Christopher never uses public toilets, just the one in his father’s house. But when he travels to London, he grows beyond his limits. When Christopher enters the bathroom in the train there is poop smeared on the toilet seat and it sickens him, but he uses it anyway. And also when he lives with his mom, because he can’t trust dad anymore, he has to use a toilet that strangers uses as well. At those three examples, we can see, how much Christopher grew out of his disabilities. Throughout the book he becomes more independent, not anymore reliable on the authorities around him.