State of mind

May 25, 2010 at 2:07 pm 7 comments

     I always feel somewhat melancholy this time of year; the school year is drawing to a close, and it feels like something important is ending. This year, something important probably is ending as it looks like we may move over the summer. We’ve been here for three years – just about as long as we’ve been anywhere since C was born.

     There are many things I don’t like about this place we now call home. Class sizes are shooting up to 31 next year, the summers are beyond hot, and our state has just passed a new law that frustrates me to the core. Yet there’s also many things to love – grandparents that are 15 minutes away, an elementary school that has been nothing short of wonderful for C, and C’s friends. Yes, I did say “friends.”

     For the first time in his life, C actually has a few friends. Whether it’s due to changes in him or just the luck of the draw with kids in his class, I’m not sure. But he seems to have eased into himself this year, and to leave behind the place that brought it out in him seems somewhat counterintuitive. Part of me wonders if we just stuck it out here, he would settle into himself even more. The kids know him better, and while there are still issues with a few children that grow in severity with each passing year, for the most part, I think C has found his place with the other children. Will that happen quickly in a new town, or will it take another three years for him to figure out where he fits? It’s hard to say.

     Last year, when C was preparing to make the challenging move from lower elementary to upper elementary school, we discussed a myriad of options including having him repeat second grade. As we all sat around at C’s IEP meeting last Spring discussing the upcoming change that seemed so potentially traumatic, the lower el principal said something to me that I still remember. She said, “Have faith in your child.”

     This principal knew something the rest of us did not. She knew – despite all our concerns about a new school that required much independence of the children, a new school that did not seem as welcoming to parents’ constant presence on campus, and a new school that seemed far less nurturing than the one where C was – it was not about all of that. It was about C. Madame Principal felt that whatever it was, C was prepared to handle it. And sure enough, she was right.

Entry filed under: autism. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , .

Honored am I We can’t always get what we want, but sometimes we get what we need

7 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Cheryl D.  |  May 25, 2010 at 3:11 pm

    If you do move, good luck with it! From what I’ve heard, moves can be tough on kids like ours. I’m sure “C” has developed some friendship skills that will carry over to his new school, if there is one!

  • 2. Caitlin  |  May 25, 2010 at 4:02 pm

    I have always struggled with putting faith in other people, my whole life. I’m sure it’s the result of a monumentally dysfunctional family/upbringing where I was very much the parent instead of the child. But for me it’s less that I don’t have faith in my child, and more that I don’t have faith in the schools, teachers, doctors, etc. I have faith in people once I get to know them and they *prove* to me that I can rely on them, but until then, I’m very much the “if you want it done right do it yourself” kinda girl.

    I need to work on that, so thanks for the reminder 🙂

  • 3. therocchronicles  |  May 25, 2010 at 4:40 pm

    That is some pretty great advice – I think I need to ponder that myself as I prepare for our IEP placement meeting. I can totally understand your fears and all that you are wondering about. I think the changes are definitely a part of C easing into himself. He’ll find his way where ever you are – because he has you to help him navigate.

  • 4. robinaltman  |  May 25, 2010 at 6:09 pm

    What a lovely story of success! I think you are so smart to take that story as encouragement that even if you do move, C has developed real strengths, and can handle it. I’m going to cross my fingers, toes, and nose hairs for you.

  • 5. lynnes  |  May 25, 2010 at 8:22 pm

    Oh wow – good luck with the move! Do you know which school he’ll be going to and what it is like yet?

  • 6. Scott Baird  |  May 26, 2010 at 6:51 am

    My thoughts, fears, and prayers go with all three of you. School districts nationwide have been cutting support for Special Education programs. Let us know what environment Chayton settles into. Then I can uncross my fingers.

  • 7. embracingspirit  |  June 5, 2010 at 8:37 am

    Yes…each step of this journey requires faith and a whole bunch of gut instinct….much luck to you…..


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