Thursday, September 9, 2010

Before I go any further...

  I just wanted it to be known to everyone that.... I have LOVED each and every teacher that has taught my children!  This needs to be shared before I continue because I do not want anyone reading this think that what we have gone through was due to anything a teacher did.  We were bounced around because of the School District Administrators and an evil word, "budget".
  In future blogs I will stress my true feelings of these certain District folks but first I need to tell you about what happened in our 2008-09 school year...

So the Summer of 2008 brought a lot of little changes...okay a big one too:)  No, not the move, I count that happening that Fall!  In the outline I did in my first blog post  you may have noticed that Ethan's last distraction was 12/07 and that the devices were on for 20wks.  He had his devices removed at the end of May, right before school was out.  So this was a little change....on June15th was a husband and I welcomed our daughter Evelynne.  Yup, Ethan got a baby sister.  That summer was fun:P  Ethan had been the baby for nearly 5yrs!!! Not to mention that with everything "Ethan", he's always been the center of attention...come on what special needs kid isn't?!?!!  It's not something you can avoid. You just have to learn balance and make sure the sibs get their time in the spotlight!!  My kids understand that this is the way things are, this is our "normal"; hours, days, and months at Children's with clinics, surgeries, studies, scans, evaluations, therapy, consults, inpatient this and outpatient that, doctors, specialists, therapists, nurses, medical equipment and boxes, baskets and drawers full of supplies!  Parts of our house(my fav the kitchen counter with all the various paperwork!!) and garage scream Ethan:)  Like I said it's unavoidable!!
  By July he liked his sissy and he only rarely asked me to give her away.  In August it was all about Ethan and his 5th Birthday.  This is when we started to notice a few signs of anxiety as well.
  Ahhhh... September, got the kids all settled into school and everything seemed all right.  Month into it we knew things weren't.  Ethan was being very difficult for his teacher and his nurse.  Oh and extremely difficult at home.  We were concerned, exhausted and realizing this wasn't just a "phase".  First we started with three daily classroom goals.  Ethan's kindergarten teacher was the one who brought this up during our 1st parent teacher conference.  He completes the goals/follows the rules he'd get a treat at the end of the day.  Well this mini behavior modification technique did the beginning!! We couldn't think of a real reason as to why he was acting out, not listening, running away and hiding. When he was at home he seemed angry all the time.  By Christmas we were trying so many "solutions" I think we were just really driving ourselves crazy!  If you remember I mentioned Ethan's anxiety...yeah it peaks during social situations.  Christmas screams social situations!!  It also was when our family and friends offered up advice and their thoughts for the root of it all; Is it baby sister?, Is it all just anxiety?, He's too young for anxiety!, Is it because he's not being understood verbally?, Is it the move with the schools?......The move with the schools!!!!! 
  After the winter break we had our annual IEP meeting and asked for the help of the school's psychologist.  We called Children's and Ethan started being followed by a psychologist there too.  So began the charts and paperwork shuffle and trying to put a name to what he was doing when and why.  At school a behavior plan was added to his IEP and at home we continued our psych appts, we were given books to turn this behavior around, and then when we thought we had the right's out for the Summer!   When doing behavior modification and dealing with anxiety you need structure and can't live without routine!!  Summer seriously messes with everything!  Its does help him a little, Ethan loves his sleep and his food, both of which he'd say he doesn't get enough of at school:)  On school mornings I'd have to wake him up nearly two hrs before the first bell!  The mornings were the worst, I shed a lot of tears during those days!  During the Summer he can sleep as much as he likes and eat all day long.   The little pig drinks about 5 cans of Pediasure a day and thinks meals are snacks!   Emphasis on 'little' pig, he is 48lbs and 4ft tall, I have no idea where he puts it.
  Before the Summer of 2009 we realized that we needed a bigger house and it couldn't wait any longer.  We hated to do it and put the kids through that but it had to be done.  We weren't a happy family crammed into a 1100 sq. ft. home.  There were now 4 kids and tiny bedrooms that barely held 3, had to go.  We were able to find a place, but it had a different "home" school.  So it was decided between the family and the IEP team that we do an In District Transfer to stay at Kellogg Marsh. We all agreed that another move would just rip apart the progress made on behavior and do more harm socially and emotionally.  So we were staying at Kellogg Marsh...

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