Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Last day countdown

Today is the last day of school. Today was also kiddette's class writing presentation. I thought it started at 9:30. It started at 9. So after showing up a half-hour late, kiddette dissolved into tears when I tried to leave. That's been my day so far. It's a bit symbolic of how awful this school year has been.

I don't know if other (read: non-special needs) parents say this, but I just cannot wait for the year to be over. I don't even know how I'm keeping kiddo occupied all summer and I don't care. I want two months of not being judged on my parenting/organizing/class-attendance skills by other parents/educators/random people in public. I want two months of NOT getting calls from the school: "Your son did XXXX," "Your son did YYYY," "Come get your son." Two whole months of not caring about homework or monitoring whether they're written enough book reports. Two whole months of not having to resent school officials.

Forget the kids. I need a break.

By the way? I was an honors student, gifted child, AP classes when I was in school. I was Hermione Granger. How bad does kiddo's school year have to be to completely sour me on the whole school experience? This bad.

I will say that he's adapted pretty well to the new program, and that the folks on the all-new IEP team seem nice and really dedicated to working with him -- as in, not even concerned that he's been throwing pencils at them or trying to escape the classroom. That sort of thing is apparently usual for newbies. They're confident that he'll continue to improve, and they said he's a happy kid who responds well to praise.

That's a nice change from "Your son did this and this and this and he's doing this deliberately and he knows better but he's making bad choices."

Anyway. The kids are home now, and everyone seems happy, especially since I promised them ice cream tonight. So we'll take summer one relaxing-ish day at a time. 

Monday, June 1, 2015

The changeling

It's hard to know how to handle a kid who changes all the time.

Sometimes he's a sweetie who likes to give hugs. Sometimes he's the kid who cheerfully went along with me to the farm for CSA pickup last week, helped me pick out the veggies on our list, and ran along the ground to marvel at the rows of potatoes he helped plant.

And then sometimes he's the kid who kicks his teacher, throws things, and runs out of the room so he doesn't have to do his classwork.

We're not entirely sure which kid we're going to get on which day. Sometimes he gets dressed without a problem. Sometimes he crouches over a Lego instead and says he doesn't care if he misses breakfast or the bus. Sometimes he does his chores, and sometimes he huddles on the couch and refuses. Sometimes he kicks.

"Changeling" means, according to legend, a baby who was secretly taken from his parents by fairies, and a fairy substitute left in his place. It's not an exact comparison here. Sometimes we have our kiddo, and sometimes we don't. But that's how it feels: Like our real kiddo has been stolen from us, but sometimes he's still here. And sometimes he isn't.

I don't think he can really control these moods. He's always sorry afterward. But it's hard to know what to do to get him through the day. It's hard to know how to help him. And it's hard not to get upset.

I've become reluctant to bring him places, like a supermarket or a festival, where I know he'll have problems. When people ask "how are the kids?" I honestly don't know how to answer. Do they want the honest answer?

I'm hoping things will settle down after the school year is over. Maybe this past year was so bad he just needs the break. Maybe we all need the break.

But right now, he's refusing to get dressed again, so the changeling is back.