Three years ago, semesters were closing, IEPs were looming, we were coming to the close of one age and entering another: kindergarten. Speech was a new thing, something to celebrated with every syllable; answering questions was something to blog about. Andy had just moved into his Big Boy Bed. Joey's default mode of communicating any kind of frustration was to scream loudly in my face, the closer the better.
We were already three school years into our "new" life of being diagnosed; of interventions, therapies, IEPs, and and accommodations. We had plowed through the fear, and emerged on the other side with the realization that Joey was still Joey. He hadn't changed. We had. Why had we been afraid? Because so much was unknown, and people who were supposed to be helping us were actively blocking us, fighting us, making it difficult to get Joey help, for us to get help. We wanted to help others get through the fear, fortify themselves with information, and share our experience. Don't other people get tired of reinventing the wheel all the time?
What we discovered after a while was a network of other folks, and we have soaked up your experiences and knowledge to help us help Joey and Andy. Today, Joey can ask questions and initiate conversation. He reads and writes and lets us know what he needs. Andy is about to start kindergarten. Both boys are toilet trained, screaming is not the primary form of communication, and we are saying goodbye to old friends like Oobi and Blue's Clues... my boys are growing up!
And to you guys: thank you.
I may not be a big, wide-read, famous blog, but I think we are achieving our purpose: a comfy corner to take a breath, shed the fear (and the exhaustion), and know we are all here having our favorite beverage of choice on the comfy couches. We're pleased and honored to have you here. And today- have some cake and ice cream, too.