Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Finding our Center

When your kid doesn't fit in, it hurts.
When he cannot operate within the classroom, it's scary.
My kid doesn't fit in and he can't operate within the school that has been the foundation of my community for 12 years.
My son doesn't have friends at school, while almost all my friends are at the same school.
Until I met my husband, this school was the only thing that kept me in this part of the country, thousands of miles from my family and friends. School became my family and friends, my safe corner of scary urban sprawl.
I had a wedding shower here.
I got my Master's here.
I took a pregnancy test in the bathroom here.
I had a baby shower here.
His baby blankets were knitted by teachers here.
The rooster came here to visit when he was 3 months old.
I took his picture on the playground on the first day of school. At the end of the day, he ran across that same playground, arms flung wide, shouting, "Mommy! Mommy! Mommy! Thank you for the preschool!"
This school has loved that child since before he was born. I called here to tell them the news of his birth from the hospital down the street before he ever had his first diaper. I felt like the school could help a tiny bit to make up for being so woefully far away from family.
Everyone here is pulling for the rooster. Everyone here reaches out to him, wants him to succeed.
His teacher's own son was in my class over a decade ago, and she wants to help my boy. His after school care provider used to teach special ed before she came here, and she goes way above and far, far beyond what anyone could expect to get him through the unstructured hour before I pick him up, because she wants to help my boy. His music teacher, his library teacher, they both think he's a special guy, they want to help him. The school psychologist gets down on the carpet, bad back and all, and reaches out to try to help him, despite the fact that the rooster just backs away, screams, and lately spits, too. I watch sometimes through the one-way mirror just downstairs from my office.
I grieve to know that my little boy is on a journey that will lead him away from this place, this place that I thought of as a special home I had to offer him. He cannot use the gifts here. I grieve.

1 comment:

Niksmom said...

Oh my grieving friend, I wish I could be there to offer a shoulder. Instead I can offer you this —Rooster cannot ACCEPT the gifts they offer *right now.* That is not to say that he will not or cannot one day in the future. And it doesn't diminish the love that everyone has for both of you.

I am not being Pollyanna-ish when I tell you that I believe you will find answers and help very soon and that one day Rooster will be able to accept the love being offered. I believe it fully.