Thursday, January 6, 2011

Strange Day

Today is Thursday. We've been back to "Normal" routine for a few days now and it's been going all right. The insanity is back. The piles of things to do continue to grow as I've been feeling lousy all week and just not had the energy to do what needs to be done (To Do Lists will probably come into play on Monday). But at least I'm up to date on laundry. But I have done a couple of things that are note-worthy.

Earlier today, I received a phone call from the school's Transportation Office to inform me of a change in Simon's morning bus (new route number, new time, etc [but at least it's the same destination -- one can never tell with the MCPS Transportation Office]). While I was on the phone with them, I recognized the golden opportunity that had been handed to me and started discussing Rachel's morning bus ride (was informed this morning that they are adding another child to the route making the pick-up time even EARLIER). I CALMLY pointed out the length of her bus ride first thing in the morning and that there will now be 8 children on her route which may mean that it's time to split the route into two. I also mentioned that we went through this last year and did (eventually) work something out that seemed to work better for everyone -- I don't know if they just split the route at that point or just did a bit of re-directing, probably the latter. The person I was talking to didn't have the authority to tell me much, but she did put my comments into a note and was going to place it on the desk of the person responsible for transportation to Rachel's school. That person is out of the office today and tomorrow, but is due back on Monday. When she returns, this note will be waiting for her and it will hopefully receive her attention. If not, I now have her name and can call and follow-up directly with this individual.

What was the accomplishment here? I was calm. I didn't raise my voice. I made sure I didn't become obstinate. I just voiced my concerns. I listened to the explanations coming from the Transportation Office representative. I even "sympathized" with what they were working with. Hopefully, this will help me get a reasonable solution for my daughter.

My other accomplishment for today is possibly starting my journey down the road to become a parent advocate. A local organization is preparing for meeting for parents to explain the services and placements in public education for children diagnosed with ASD. One of the most important goals of this meeting (forum) is to empower parents with the information needed to ensure their children are assigned to the most appropriate placement/services (taken directly from the email). One of the areas that this forum will address is preschool placements. I have volunteered for the committee to advise the administrators of the areas where information is most widely sought. Will I be accepted to this committee? I don't know. But I have volunteered and hope they will allow me to participate.

Also, while Daniel was at soccer practice this evening (with Dad), the twins and I were here alone for dinner. We recently signed up with NetFlix and are enjoying streaming movies directly to our player. One of the movies we had in our queue was "Wiggle Dancing In The USA" (or something similar -- not quite sure of the title). I turned it on just before setting dinner on the table and watched Simon for his reaction. He was getting into the concert setting of this movie. He wasn't reacting badly to the lights or the noises from the crowd or the minor variations to the songs from the versions he's familiar with, all of which are good signs for us taking him to see the Laurie Berkner Band concert in DC in early March. But there's still several questions about whether it's a smart idea. I'm still "thinking about it", but definitely leaning in favor of going to the concert.

So, today has been a productive day, despite "not doing anything". I don't know what will come of either of these things, but at least I'm starting to accomplish something. And, for today, I'll take it.

Now I just have to figure out how to avoid the tantrums while picking up "'da boyz" that have plagued us this week. The problem isn't the tantrums themselves -- I can deal with that. The problem is the location of these tantrums -- in the middle of the street or in the parking lot. Is it just getting back into the swing of things or do we need to rethink how we do this?

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