There is that moment of fear that still grabs hold of the hair on the back of my neck when I let him go: will it be a good day? Will it be a crisis ridden day? Will someone be mean to him in a way he cannot handle? Will anyone be there to help him if he can’t handle it?
It is difficult to explain this to parents who don’t have a child on the autism spectrum this everyday fear that is particularly fussy at the beginnings of new terms, when classroom changes may happen.
I remember when he was in kindergarten, it was after the winter break his world came crashing apart.
I remember in first grade when he finally went back to school, the relief I felt that he was at least someplace for school even if it wasn’t an exactly right fit.
Now I am contemplating the end of his elementary school years and the “what’s next” that comes with that.
I have always been strongly against helicopter parenting except when it comes to the case of educational planning. I need to start visiting junior high schools here in my school district and see if any of them are a remotely decent fit for him. I also need to see what I can find for him socially since he is adamantly opposed to returning to his after school program.
My dream is a program that includes both neurotypical children as well as neuroatypical children, all becoming friends and honoring each other’s differences and sameness. The biggest obstacle I see for Samuel is his lack of friends in his general education class, even friends that may label him as friends but he doesn’t label as friends.
I asked him “Who will you invite to your birthday party if you stop going to your after school program?”
He didn’t seem as concerned with that thought as I am.
All of this flew through my head as I watched him walk away from me this morning. Three hours until I pick him up from school and I can breathe deeply again.Follow me on Twitter: @JulieJordanScot
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© 2013 by Julie Jordan Scott
This is my eighth post (of 31!) for the January Ultimate Blog Challenge. Watch here for challenge posts which will include Writing Prompts, Writing Tips and General Life Tips and Essays.