Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Taking Action Makes Me Happy

I've been avoiding writing about how Jack is doing at kindergarten. I've been trying to process how things are going and what we need to do, and just pretending that the giant elephant isn't standing in the middle of the room.

Instead, hey! Can I tell you about the weather? It rained, ya know? And there was this day that my dog had to go to the vet. Maybe I could itemize the bill for you? Or maybe tell you about the night that I actually cooked dinner?

And what was I talking about? Oh, yeah, the elephant there.

Jack is struggling. Jack needs more support. Sigh. I kinda wish he was still in preschool. Double sigh. We called an IEP meeting, which is scheduled for next week, and I'm hoping the good will of Jack's team (and our newly hired educational attorney) will translate into what he needs to help him be successful.

Now, how 'bout that weather?


  1. Sigh indeed. But it will be okay. It sounds like there is plenty of good will on his team, and with an attorney in your corner, you surely have the bases covered.

    I still think you were right to start him in kindergarten. The issues you are addressing now would probably not have changed if you'd waited a year. Better to get him what he needs sooner than later. These early years are the best time to intervene.

    It will get better. It will. (Do you read Drama Mama? Her latest post is a must-read: http://likeashark.blogspot.com/2008/09/my-little-friends.html )

    Thinking of you.

  2. I've been wondering how things were going. You've been awfully quiet about it, which I was hoping was good news. I'm sorry things are rough.

    He needed to go to K. He wasn't going to get any more out of preK than he did, and it was time to move on. Waiting would have just made him obviously older than the other children, and that much more ingrained in a prek classroom system rather than adapting to a K format. And M is right - the intervention is better earlier than later.

    It will get better. It will. I can't wait to hear what happens at the meeting.

    In the meantime, nice cooler weather we're finally having, huh?

  3. The best advice I ever got about lawyers and IEP meeitings actually came from a lawyer. She told me (I'm paraphrasing here)"Don't focus strictly on what the law says your child can/should be entitled to. That's your tool. Instead, stay focused on what the outcomes are that you want for your child and use those tools to help you get them."

    Don't know if that helps or confuses things! LOL

    Sending you good IEP vibes!

  4. You can do it. I know you, and Alex, and Jack can do it. Hang in there.

  5. i really hope you get the help you guys need. i am sorry you are dealing with all this. you are such a wonderful mom and advocate for him.

  6. I totally agree with the other comments. Moving on was necessary to see what supports he needs. All I can say is Go Team Stimey, Go, Go!!! Let me know if there is any lingo I can help with (although the lawyer should be pretty good at that). Always remember that you are the expert on your child and know what he needs. Big, Big, Big hugs.

  7. I know just what you mean about not feeling like you can write about stuff until you've processed it.

    On the other hand .... you called an IEP meeting. You hired an attorney. You are on the ball, my friend. And you will get him what he needs. Go Stimey!!!

  8. Good luck at the IEP. I agree that "doing something" is automatically empowering. I felt similarly about moving my son from only day care to the half day of preschool when he was two. That was a hard transition and I missed the easy days of just dropping him off in the happy place where he felt safe and comfortable. I'm sure we'll go through the same thing with kindergarten when he has to go to a completely different school! I don't like transitions myself - so I really feel for these little guys.

  9. ***HUGS*** Keep pitching. You'll get it done, and on track. You're good at that. ;)

  10. Hey there,

    I've lurked, lurked, lurked on your blog as I worried about my own son, who is in a special ed preschool program, and now it looks like he'll be getting his own autism diagnosis. Just wanted to say, reading your blog has really helped, for what that's worth.

    Good luck with the IEP meeting, and good for you for doing what you think is right for Jack.

    Also, I was reminded of one of your blog posts at our big appointment with the Important Psychiatrist last week--my son didn't lick the doctor, but he did lick every single chair in the room. Sigh.

    So, that rainstorm was pretty cool, huh?

  11. I love you and it'll work out. Know that I'm in your corner and if you want to talk about it with someone you can share all with me, and then we can go back to ignoring the elephant in the room (but yet it'll be easier as you told at least one person).

  12. It sounds like Jack has a great team in his corner, I can't help but believe things are going to work out for him.

    Keep the faith, my friend. You've left nothing to chance here and you are an amazing mom and advocate for your son. Good luck, and when you want to talk about it, you've got some good listeners in YOUR corner.

  13. {{{HUGS}}}

    Everyone has pretty much said everything. It's so very tiring, and emotionally draining, and all-encompassing. And listen to what Niksmom said... and then make sure that support he needs is documented in his IEP, and it's not just people shaking their heads saying "Oh, sure we can do that." or the favorite line from my son's school "We do that for ALL X graders."

  14. It IS a process, isn't it? But you're looking out for him, you will figure it out.
    ... what the hell is an educational attorney though?

  15. He's got you in his back pocket.

    It saddens me that you have to hire an "educational attorney". That just seems wrong. But I hope it gets you what he needs.

  16. I'm sorry it's not going well, but I'm glad to hear you are taking steps on Jack's part. He's so lucky to have parents that care so much and are so involved.

  17. hang in;
    hopefully things will get better and better= he'll get more comfortable in school,etc. as he goes more and more this year.

    it's wonderful that he has you all -
    good work mom :)

  18. Jack has everything he needs. A good team, a good principal, an awesome mom who is RIGHT on top of things, and now an educational attorney. You are doing everything right - you just have to figure out how to get the pieces together. Hang in!

  19. Hi Stimey. It must hurt so much as a mom to know that your little boy is struggling. Sorry to hear that things aren't going as well as you'd hoped (and prayed.)

    Everything everyone has already said here is spot on. You've been a tremendous advocate for Jack and always will be. And I bet that he, in his own way, will always be your biggest advocate too. I just get a sense from all your stories that your connection to each other is special. Big hugs to you and all your men, especially your Jack. -Monica

  20. Sometimes they like to start kids out with LESS support just to see how they do, because I guess it saves them the money of paying extra support staff for a child who doesn't really need it. I'm sure you know, give them specific examples of where you think Jack needs support, and keep pushing for it until they give it to him! Its better that he get all the support he needs right now, and maybe less services as he gets older and more independent, instead of starting off on the wrong foot in kindergarten! Good luck!

  21. We advocate for our children. It's what we do. Good wishes coming your way.

  22. We'll be thinking of you. It's such a good thing that Jack has you and Alex standing up for him.


  23. I'm sorry that things still aren't going as well as you'd hoped. But you are taking the right steps in the right direction. Hang in there!

  24. I know how stressful and scary it is but you really are doing a great job of advocating for Jack. I'm sorry you had to get an attorney too, but sometimes that's all the county needs to sit up and take notice. Hang in there and keep the faith: Jack will get what he needs, how can he not with everyone in his corner?

  25. Good luck, and can't wait to read the epilogue. I have one on the spectrum entering preschool soon, so my adventure is just beginning.

  26. Your honesty and authenticity are blessing so many people, including me.

    Thank you for your writing.

    Kindergarten is just such a trial for so many parents and children.

    I wish you the best at that IEP meeting.


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