When you decide to have kids; when you get that positive test result after pee'ing on a stick, you see your life stretched out in front of you. You see where you will be in 9 months time; giving birth. You see your life 12 months time; weening a happy baby with mushed banana and rice pudding. In 6 years time you are patting them on their head and sending them to school. Happy, content and ready to be educated. Your life will then be set to resume on it's normal course, except poorer and more hectic. Everything will be just peachy.
Except in 6 years time, (or in our case 7), you aren't sat in front of your office desk, looking at family pictures, waiting till 5pm comes around so you can pick up your angel from Day-care. Nope, you are sat in the resource room discussing behavioural issues. AGAIN. For the.. what is it? The fifth time that year and it's only November?
Yep, that was me. AGAIN. Why is it whenever I get called to the resource room regarding an incident with D in school I get that feeling of dread? I am not 15. I haven't been caught kissing Rob, "what's-his-name" behind the school gym. I haven't forgotten my homework. I haven't been sending notes to the back of the class to my friends. I left school 20 years ago, but yet, every time I get that call (or in this case text message, this is the 21st century), I get the exact feeling. I can feel the humiliation as I walk to the teachers office. This time however , it's not a case of being a bad student, but the feeling of being a bad parent.
The stupid thing is, is that I know I am not. I also know that the teachers and probably the parent's at the school -well the one's worth knowing- know I'm not. They know I am doing the best I can. There is no reason to feel like this.
They know that at 9:30 at night, (let's call this a Friday, because it's a public holiday tomorrow), with a glass of wine in hand and maybe a couple already in the system, I am sat in front of the computer checking out Behavioural Consultants. I have a browser tab open at the local "Mental-health" bookstore, so I can research books on behavioural intervention. I am sending emails to Autism centres about group sessions. I am looking at my own collection of text books on behavioural intervention seeing what practises I can put into place to help the issues happening in school.
Yet, when I walk into that office, I feel like I have failed and it's crappy. It's stupid and idiotic and completely untrue, but yet, the smell of the dis-infectant and floor wax, just takes me back 20+years. I get that feeling in my stomach and I feel my heart racing. I get that feeling of dread; the same one you have before you take an exam - or a firing squad.
I am writing this post not for any real reason, other than to unleash my slightly tipsy and over-tired thoughts onto the unsuspecting populous. Just feeling a need to rant and rave at the unjust feelings I have because I was dealt a slightly different hand to the one I had planned 7 years ago, as the stick turned blue. Just wanting a few moments to shout, "THIS ISN'T FAIR! I WANTED A NORMAL FAMILY".
I then realise that as soon as I say something like that - as soon as I jealously covet the other mothers picking up their normal kids from school - that I realise I actually don't want that at all. Frankly having a normal kid would be dull and would drive me more insane than I already am. That if I had a normal 6 year old, I wouldn't have the opportunity to feel pride as his resource room teacher mentioned she had a very interesting discussion with him about black holes. I wouldn't get the same "kick" out of the "normal" kid, as I do with mine, when he get's up on stage to recite a Remembrance Poem with his class. Looking at him fidget and squirm, but knowing that just being up there on stage means he is trying 110% more than his class mates. I wouldn't be able to show that I can be the exceptional mother I am because I have the exceptional son I have.
Okay, that post turned into more of a self-affirmation than I had planned, but you know what? I don't care. Frankly it's kind of what I needed right now. It was either patting myself on the back, or hitting the hard liquor and prozac. I just had to shell out $450 on police certificates for our residency application today - self affirmation is cheaper ;) Okay, so the internet is in a sorrier state than it was 25 minutes ago, but I feel better. Hey, just be thankful - I could be posting one of those blog posts, telling you that my golden child had just scored his 3rd world class medal at chess and he's only 3. Admit it, my (slightly) drunken posts talking about my (slightly) dis-functional kid is a lot less annoying. :)
Thanks for reading this far. If I ever meet-up with you, I'll buy you a drink. Heck, if you have read this far, you deserve it! Personally, I am going to publish this, crash into bed, then wake up tomorrow as I look on in horror and scream "I WROTE WHAT?". Enjoy this before I wake up tomorrow with a slight hang-over and remember how to use the delete key.