Monday, September 12, 2011

Two Steps Forward, A Million Steps Back

Wow, being a mom to a special needs kid is never easy.

I think what’s hardest, though, is that you never know when issues you thought were totally gone suddenly come back with a vengeance.

One therapist says Bud is autistic.

Another says no, he’s just quirky.

Well, my quirky kid has been crying…for two hours. He literally can’t stop. He’s sick, and the doctor put him on 5 meds. Taking all of them scared him, and he hasn’t been able to calm down sense.

So frustrating.

You want to help, but nothing seems to work - not even his favorite dog at his side.

This has already been a rotten year.

At school, we’ve already had two parent meetings, and we’re only 3 weeks in. The teachers have changed the rules on us, and his friends are no longer allowed to eat with him at his nut-free table. These same two boys have eaten lunch with him every day for three years. And now, because they bring their lunch from home, suddenly they’re off limits. One of these kids learned to eat sunflower-seed-butter sandwiches so he’d be safe for my son.

But the school says it’s too hard for them to check the two boys’ lunches every day…even though they’ve never brought anything dangerous…and he’s lost his safe haven at lunch.

His teacher doesn’t understand the dynamics of working with a dyslexic student - much less one who has a few wires that work differently than other kids. Going to school has become a chore.

And now he’s worn down.

My amazing boy - who was beyond proud of his straight As and “student of the six weeks”….the kid who substitutes have left notes about how amazing he is to have in class….the one who was the reason his dyslexia specialist didn’t retire this year…

That kid.

He’s drowning. He’s so stressed out about school and everything that’s changed. He made himself sick.

Tonight he’s just a shadow of the kid I’ve come to know over the past year.

We’ve worked so hard to get to this point, but the “old” Bud is back. The one that’s inconsolable. The one who can’t communicate.

And my heart breaks.

As a mom and as a teacher, I wish schools could see what their never-ending emphasis on tests….and silly rules….and “getting kids ready for next year” is doing to the students.

Teachers are parents, well, a lot of them are. I understand they’re stressed. They’re overworked. They have too much to do and too little time to do it.

I know.

I’ve been there.

But I wish they could see my son right now….well, maybe I don’t.

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