Wow. What a day. It was one of those days. The really amazing ones with so many twists and turns that by the end of the day you look back and wonder, did all of that really happen in one day?
We met with Jake’s teacher, special education teacher and educational assistants today. He is immersed in a regular kindergarten class, and let me tell you, these ladies are amazing. There are 17 kids in the class, and I have heard that there are at least 5 “high needs” students. That’s parent talk for “we don’t know what their issues are, but we are pretty sure they have some.” That is amazing. These ladies are so wonderful. They spoke to us about goals and struggles that Jake is having at school. Even more than that, though, they spoke to us about how far he has come since September.
“He doesn’t just put down his head and barrel into the other students anymore.”
“He eats his lunch.”
“He doesn’t push me to get attention.”
“He talks to me about what he is worried about.”
It was like getting a wonderful massage and sipping on a glass of wine on a summer night. That good. One of them described how they sometimes take Jake out of the class to make some big, strong, directed movements to shake him up and get him ready to work with the class again. One of them talked about how she sits with him while he works, and it’s hard for him to wait for his classmates to understand the material. So she tells him to work through it, checks that it’s right, then sends him to play quietly. These women are my heroes.
It wasn’t all perfect reports; he is struggling with anxiety, social skills, and has some behaviour outbursts that are not okay. What I really loved, though, was how they looked at him and understood who he really is. A whole, beautiful, special little boy. I could see love in their words and their faces.
I came home to babysit for a dear, dear friend and received a phone call. Then Jake, this special little boy, was having a hard day and he hit another student. His teacher sounded apologetic, and said she just wanted him to be successful and if he was having such a hard day maybe he should go home. As I was babysitting, I could not go get him. And so there was texting and his dear auntie did the pick up. Now I have my three and another. The afternoon was ok… but Jake had an outburst when the littler kids broke up his lego. He upset our visitor so much that he was sobbing for about 15 minutes and only wanted to go home. Yikes. Then Dad came home and the behaviour interventionist came for her first real session. Jake loves her. But so far they have only played and had fun together.
Today was more work for him. I checked on them once, overcome with curiosity. He was doing great. And he was learning how to listen to people with his whole body, so he isn’t playing around or getting distracted. That was all good.
We had tacos. We do that on Tuesday. It went smoothly. Penny is eating rice cereal like a starving kid. She loved it. And then I ran back to the school to talk to potential Kindergarten parents about why they should pick us over the free public system. Whew.
Apparently while I was out Penny screamed. The boys ran in and out of her room while her Dad tried to get her to sleep. Then they were trouble and wouldn’t get ready, wouldn’t get in bed, wouldn’t stay in bed. Poor Dad. It was one of those days.
The result of a day like this is a big mess and no energy to clean it up. I am going to sleep peacefully, however, just thinking of my kiddo. In that class full of needs, thriving, growing, learning. What blessings we have.