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Saturday, May 19, 2007

Flip a coin

During the lull at the IEP meeting, when i’s are dotted, t’s are crossed and photocopies made, I chat to the other team members. I remark about how well the play dates have been progressing with the child we called Joe, in my older son’s class; what a delightful boy he is, so sweet natured, such language facility, how my boys are able to ‘share’ him, how patient he is with them both, how’s he managed to magically lure them outside……I glance up when I realize that I am rambling, to check that we are of one accord regarding Joe’s outstanding personality, so that they may contribute to his adulation, that "paragon of virtue," lucky boy, lucky family, lucky school. I see widened eyes and electricity pass between them.

Initially I put this down to confidentiality, which is as it should be, but a blurt or two corrects my misapprehension. Their experience differs from mine. I note the double check. Are talking about Joe here? Indeed I was. Joe, who like my son, is a filthy little ragamuffin at the end of the day. Where do they find so much dirt? How do they manage to get quite so mucky? I beam with warmth for that exceptional child. A polite puff or three follows. We are not on the same page, or even them same book. I am happy for things to remain confidential but it made me reflect upon the truism, that children behave differently in different circumstances. [translation = as do adults]


For as long as I can remember I have had a healthy respect for this truism. I used to be somewhat fearful and cautious about these differences, but in the light of Joe in my home, with my children, whatever the truth of the matter, in my eyes, Joe showed his true colours, the rainbow that he is and the hidden treasure.

12 comments:

Joeymom said...

What's the problem with a little dirt? They're BOYS. These are school people- they should know that boys get dirty. (But they are probably like my school personnel- mystified that disabled children are still children, and/or completely ignorant that normal children get dirty, too). Sounds like a fabulous playmate to me! I hope Joey has such wonderful friends as he grows!

farmwifetwo said...

I have heard stories about a couple of children in my littlest's class. I saw them for the first time on Fri at a field trip.

I saw a system that felt that since they weren't properly dx'd.. they could shove them to someone else...

Makes me feel better when I stand up and fight for what is needed.

S.

Mamaroo said...

Joe sounds great! At least some of us have the ability to see people for who they really are.

I am happy that your boys found the perfect playmate.

Susan E said...

Ah yes, situational behavior. A friend of mine told me recently that her daughter had been recommended for a developmental eval...she was about to sign on the dotted line when she ran into some other parents in the class, whose darlings had also been similarly recommended. Turns out there was a mini-"epidemic" in the class attributable to the fact that the teacher had completely lost control over the classroom. So what does that tell us about poor Joe?

tegdirb92 said...

Yes, I find it also interesting the "perspective" that teachers sometimes have on their classroom kids is very much different than a parents perspective on a child. My son would love to have a "Joe" in his life to interact and play with :)

P.S. IEP meetings are always PAINFUL for me--even the word makes me shiver!

Jessica said...

This situational thing also works in other areas too. My friend (from before we had kids) has two kids on the spectrum. I have one. We are in the same program, have the same professionals working with us. I am pretty happy with the staff and a particular speech teacher my son has had for 3 years. My friend is unhappy with the program and can't stand this speech teacher.

Mom to JBG said...

Joe is lucky to have your family, just as you feel so lucky to have found him!

thismom.com said...

see, i love the joe in your home. he must feel safe there, understood, invited, accepted, and inspired. i admire your whole household for that. it's too bad the school can't see this as HARD EVIDENCE for their need to make some changes so they, too, could see the real joe.

aspiemom said...

I wish we had Joe in our house.

((((((Joe)))))

a mommy said...

Children seem to me as a rule to respond in kind to the way they are treated. When good is expected of them, they rise to the occasion; when bad is expected of them, it is guaranteed.

I wish that we were having play dates. All of us need them, but because of my work schedule, I very infrequently can do this. It was better when we had a house-with a yard - but now in an apartment, it is hard to have other children over to play. It becomes just one more thing to manage, and falls by the wayside despite how critical it is.

Melissa said...

Dirt is good for you. Just ask my kids. And I think it's great that Joe is such a great playmate! Hey, if it ain't broke, don't fix it! (and don't ask questions!!!)

isabella mori said...

LOVE the juxtaposition of the various images; especially to see a a couple of masks in the vicinity of two brain scans ... interesting, interesting, gives me lots to think about ...

 
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