Friday, October 22, 2010
A Bittersweet Day
One of his issues has been a severe lack of attendance at school. Whenever my wife or I try to get him to go to school, he would drop to the ground, hit, kick, and refuse to budge. He is about 5'10" and I would say weights between 170-180 pounds. I have to estimate because he refuses to get on a scale. So you can see, we physically can not get him off the ground and to the car to go to school.
For the past two years, this has been an ongoing issue. For most of that time, we had been able to get him to go to school 2-3 days per week. Since August, we have not been able to get him to school. There have been a couple occasions when my wife was able to get him in the car, and he unlocked the car, opened the door, and got out of the car while it was moving. Fortunately, he never got injured.
For several months now, we have been trying to get the school system to allow our son to go to a residential school on the Eastern Shore of Maryland. We our familiar with this particular school because our nephew, who is also autistic, just graduated from there. They did amazing things with him there. It is astonishing how similar the two boys are.
Unfortunately, as much as we tried to convince the school system that the best place for our son would be the residential school, they refused to consider placing them there. In the past few months, with the assistance of our in-laws, we have stepped up the efforts to get him the placement we felt he needed. Several meetings and home visits later, they finally decided to recommend his placement in this school.
Here is where the bittersweet comes in. Other than one or two nights spent at his grandparent's house, my son has never been away from both his parents. Once he is at the new school, we will not be able to see him for five weeks so that he can adjust to his new situation.
The thought of being separated from him breaks my heart. In my mind, I know that this is the best place for him to get the education and help he needs. I have seen first hand the love and caring that the people at the school have for the students. I have also seen how much they can help these kids.