Special Needs

The ?Benefit of Special Needs

There are some benefits to having special needs children but it's not always the benefits that are at the forefront of their parents minds. You have one child with special needs and there can be times of devastation and times of grieving. It's a death of the life that you assumed you would have with your child. But as you move forward, you realize that your child is not any different than what you thought of your child the day before the diagnosis.

Then you debate or maybe some couples don't debate whether to have more children. Could God possibly give you more than one child with special needs? You can be all philosophical and say that all children have special needs in their own way but parents with a special needs child really know what special needs children are really about.

But than your younger child turns out to have special needs too. You justify it by saying that he'll only qualify for one year of funding but than that year comes and goes and than you find out that their are more needs that you weren't even aware of the first year.

In a parent's eyes, you see your child as equal as the rest. No deficiencies. How can your child have special needs? Than you take your child to soccer, the activity your child begged you to play just one year before, and it is such a battle to get him to the playing field. What! That just doesn't make any sense? This child was begging to play soccer. So tell me...what is it about your child's brain that is preventing him from playing soccer? But yet you go to the doctor and the pediatrician attempting to get the preliminary assessments completed to confirm what your heart really knows. The things in your heart that your heart is so desperately trying to dismiss. Everything inside you that is hoping you will be wrong this one time.

The doctor states that medication could confirm a diagnosis but isn't there any kind of systematic way of testing first prior to giving medications. Am I the doctor? Am I the one to diagnose? Who is paid the big bucks here for so many years of schooling? Or is this not their problem? Is it a way of passing the buck to someone else?

What is wrong with this picture?

Jack's first day

So we went for a staggered entry day at the preschool on Thursday. The parents are encouraged to go with their child and Jack's worker was unable to go with him.

We were going to have one worker but with some reshuffling, Jack's worker has now changed. So his worker will not be starting until Wednesday so until then, we will just have some fillers.

I was happy to have the extra time to spend with the boy that always needs the extra time with me. I was happy not to have the staff that day because I think that it is unnecessary to have a parent and a worker that day.

So the incident began when I was talking to one of the teachers about the fundraising coupon books. At this time, Jack had gone into one of the rooms and another boy had gone in at the same time. Well it certainly was the wrong time to be busy. There was the sound of a scuffle and when I looked in the room, Jack had backed the boy against the wall and was attacking him. He was scratching his face and the boy was screaming. I walked into the room, broke up the fight and I had one very upset boy on my hands. I'm just wondering what the boy did to Jack to make him so upset. Jack doesn't normally lash out at someone unless the other little boy had done something first. I know that it was definitely an issue of sharing.

Thankfully it was time to clean up and snack time. Jack sat down at the table and just pointed his finger at the boy he had gotten into the fight with. I was thinking that I had to figure out who the boys mother was in order to clear the air. Not a great way to start school. I talked to the teacher and she seemed to think that the other mother was totally okay with everything but I wasn't going to take the chance.

My moment of opportunity arose and I took it. I just apologized for my son's actions. She stated that her son is the only child and does not do well with sharing. Should be an interesting year! I am so glad Jack has an aide to watch out for those moments and to help him deal with those moments a lot better. 

Funding or Fulfillment

I love my kids and I would do almost anything for them. Maybe that is my downfall. I love them desperately. But I do recognize the importance of my happiness and how that can affect my children.

So what do you do? Do we stay in Calgary because there is amazing funding for respite, speech support, preschool support and all of the other great support that we receive?

Calgary is actually a pretty good place for kids to grow up. I feel pretty safe here and I am definitely grateful for that with having children here. However, I never liked Calgary even prior to my relocating here but the benefits are very hard to ignore. Will my children's lives be far higher functioning because they receive these supports now? Would it be beneficial to stick it out in Calgary for just a few more years just to get our children past these important development years.

I just feel that the longer we stay here, the harder it will be to leave because all of our children are making friends and I really value those friendships. There is a lot to be said about your children developing friendships and learning to maintain them.

I'm not saying I cannot be happy here but it certainly would not be my first choice for a place to live.

The verdict is still out on Gabriel. I'm very encouraged with his speech but it is still early on. We will see. Optimistically hopeful for speech and development.

I guess the decision to move away would be easier if we had a place in mind. To move away from the funding, there would have to be some pretty strong motivating factors. Maybe in some ways it would be God's promptings. I just feel like there is just somewhere better for us than Calgary. Something more fulfilling.