“Gosh you’re a real Debbie Downer on the new blog, eh?” a friend said. So I reread the whole three posts I have so far and well, yeah I guess I have been. Sorry about that. It’s just where I have been lately. FASD is a never ending cycle of unpredictable ups and downs and we’ve been on the down sweep for the last few weeks. I can see light head, and I’m pretty sure it is not an oncoming train so I should lighten up a bit soon.
Tomorrow is the first day of school. I’m working my way toward cautiously optimistic on that front. Little Man and I have been going up to the school every day in the afternoon. The teachers are there setting up their rooms and having meetings. We don’t intrude on that, just walk around and talk about who he knows, Ms. Becky his speech therapist is in this room, that room will be his new kindergarten class, here’s the music room, blah, blah. We play on the playground some too and talk about how it will be fun to have time there at recess each day. Yesterday there were a few other kids around and Little Man introduced himself to one. Yippeee!! And he gave his new kindergarten teacher a sort of halfhearted hug. Hey its progress! Mom is trying to thaw out toward her too. Her initial comment of “I’ve been doing this for 36 years. We’ll be fine” was probably meant to be reassuring not the brush off it felt like. He does need structure and stability and after 36 years she probably has that down, right?
We also had good news about him being accepted into the speech program at a nearby collage. This was a find that still blows me away. After struggling to fund $150 per session speech therapy out of pocket for almost a year Little Man’s special ed. teacher told me that a program at the college selects a few children every year to work one on one with their graduate students as part of their teaching certification program – FOR FREE.
Three hours a day five days a week – one on one speech therapy – FOR FREE! Anyone with special needs children needs to get their backsides to the colleges near them and see if there are programs like this for your child’s needs. If there isn’t you need to suggest one to them!! For real people! I would have paid $13,500 for this amount of one on one help if I had not found this!!
Anyway with his teacher’s recommendation and my impassioned pleas we managed to get Little Man accepted to the summer program. He made great progress and more importantly he LOVED it. I have been holding my breath waiting to see if he would get into the school year program as well and he has!! It is not a pain free program for us. The financial burden is gone but the school is 45 minutes away so I did have to negotiate an altered work schedule so I can get him there and back. Because of that It will only be twice a week not every day like the summer program but I am still thrilled. (and worried about if my boss will get sick of it and renig but that's aproblem for another day!) Little Man does receive speech therapy at the school but it is half an hour of group time. That was just not making a difference for him. This summer program has and God willing the school year program will continue to even though its not as intensive as the summer program.
So, brighter days ahead, and darker, and brighter, and darker, and brighter and .... you get the picture.