Wednesday, April 21, 2010
ANGELS AMONG US
I think that half the reason STM got his gluten intolerance diagnosis, is so I'd be motivated to shop at New Seasons. All my best "meetings" happen there, "coincidentally." First it was with Friends 1 and 2 about getting a dog for Rojo (and we all know how that turned out) then yesterday I ran into the one person I most needed to run into at that exact moment, "J."
Monday we had our IEP meeting to determine Rojo's eligibility. I'd been dreading it and bracing myself for weeks. STM said he considered it an "errand." I didn't know whether to love or hate him for that attitude. I loved that he was able to detach from it, consider it something that needed doing, and wasn't in knots over it like I was. Part of me really wanted him worried sick right along with me.
Really glad STM was there, however, as he quickly moved out of "errand" mode into kick ass mode, and was the hero of the whole thing, calling BS and being assertive when I was flattened and stunned by the complete bureaucracy and dehumanization of the process. I won't even go into all the gory details, suffice it to say I left the meeting too sickened to even come home and drink. That's how bad it was.
But. There was one person there, the OT, who hadn't even laid eyes on my son (yet was reporting on him, don't get me started). She went home and later that same night wrote us a long e-mail apologizing for the meeting, how she was sorry we focused only on his weaknesses, and how she knew Rojo had many strengths. She explained how she has two sons, one with an IEP and she works in the system, and still finds it confusing and frustrating.
She got it.
Also had two amazing souls from Rojo's school there lending support, wisdom, balance and humor to the meeting.
Have had three more e-mail exchanges with my new best friend the OT, she's recommended books, videos, advocacy programs, given names of people in the system that can be of help, etc. Above and beyond.
So, back to New Seasons. On Tuesday, still walking around in a PTSD trance, I ran into J. She has a son two years older than Rojo with special needs. J. is a crier and when I'm around her, so am I. We stood in the middle of New Seasons yesterday and cried, and laughed, and hugged, and raged, and offered up hope and belief that our sons will be okay, despite the system, despite the BS, despite all bell curves to the contrary.
Because we both believe in angels.
Angels among us.
* Photo from: 777denny.files.wordpress.com