Friday, May 27, 2011

End of another school year

At the end of this school year, after the graduations, ceremonies and awards - my girls will be another "year" older. It's really weird to think about that!  Bella will be graduating into Kindergarten! AHH!!! Seriously - I'm FREAKING OUT! When did that happen?  Just the past few weeks we had her "transition" IEP meeting and honestly - I cried.  Not because they were "covering" things that I didn't know or they were criticizing things.  They weren't telling me that she was drowning or struggling or had concerns - it was actually the opposite.  They told me that Bella is a joy and smart and funny. They don't have alot of concerns for her and they all think she will do VERY well in kindergarten. They increased her "pull out" services to help her with her handwriting and some other very basic OT things - but other than that - she's great!  But my BABY is going into KINDERGARTEN!! OMG?!! I'm gonna need drugs for her "graduation".

And BEAR!! My heart - my baby! (And I know that sounds bad - but Bear has been a mama's girl since birth and she's MY baby!) She's graduating into 1st grade. I am having a hard time with this and I won't lie. It is breaking my heart to think of her growing up and moving on into 1st grade!  I don't want her to grow up! I want her to stay little and be safe and protected and everything. The older she gets the harder it's going to be for me to protect her and keep her safe. And yes - i know it's just 1st grade but still!!! At her yearly review meeting they kept pointing out how well she's doing and how compassionate she is. How she's reading above grade level and how much she loves her classmates and takes alot of pride in her art projects. They're going to have a little "cap and gown" graduation ceremony and really - they're getting little diploma's!! I'm really, truly going to cry my eyes out when she has her graduation!

My biggest baby - Roo is going into 3rd (THIRD) grade!! AGGHH!! (insert frantically panicky mother here!)  I won't even get into her transition meeting because it was horribly uncoordinated and too long - but needless to say her 3rd grade year is going to be stressful for this mama and daddy. With E.O.G. tests (if they don't pass their end of grade asssesments - they don't move onto the next year) and faster paced classes - it's going to be interesting.  BUT - for this year - my girl did so great! She's getting an award for her A.R. accomplishments (accelerated reader) and having a breakfast with the school folks (and parents) to recognize her overall accomplishments. I'm one proud mama!  I'm not sure if her class is having a graduation yet or not - but she's on her end of year field trip to the Aquarium today. Here's hoping that she's having alot of fun and enjoying her day!

So I'll post some pictures after all this is done and said. I'm so proud of my girls and excited for them to have a summer vacation. This mama is excited to not have to iron uniforms and rush out the doors with them every morning!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

the knowing

So life has been pretty crazy lately and I've had a hard time figuring out how to keep telling our story from the past to the present. It's not that I don't want to share the details or that I find it too "close to the bone". It's more that I really don't remember alot of the day to day that we've gone through. There are some things that I vividly remember down to the color shirts the girls wore or the way the phone rang. I remember walking through the new classroom that the girls were transferred to and the absolute rage that I had when they continued to make changes to the classroom after the kids started.

I remember the "graduation" that they had when they finished the school year. I remember the smiles the girls had when they got their certificates for finishing the school year and the relief I felt when the school board said they would be replacing the "lead teacher" with a more qualified and compassionate woman. I remember all of that crystal clear. But I don't remember noticing the differences that the girls had as they grew. I don't remember the moments when things clicked and I "knew" that something was wrong. I do remember the day that Bella stuck her hand in a floorboard heater and gave herself a second degree burn - but she didn't cry.

I remember the alarm bells going off in my head that my "baby" wasn't ok. I remember breaking down in tears on the living room floor. I remember shaking and sobbing and feeling like I was going to vomit. I remember the feeling of not being able to breathe and wanting my heart to stop racing. I remember knowing that those feelings weren't going to get any better. I remember sobbing at all those "not going to happen" thoughts that were running through my mind and my heart.

Even today, after another appointment with the girls' psychiatrist and discussions about changing medications and "stumping" the doctor with behaviors and indicators. I have gotten used to hearing that we "stumped" the doctor and that she would "talk to a few other doctors" to get some "ideas" on what we can do to make Bear stop eating her fingers. Or what we can do to get Bella to stop running into the street with no care of oncoming traffic. And it's so frustrating to sit there and spout off all of the things that we've already done to try and help them. All of the sage ideas that are well meaning but unsuccessful.

To have to recount all the nights, weeks, months of "odd behaviors" or "problem behaviors" or "typical disorder" behaviors. And while I know that the doctors need to know what they girls have done over the years  and that in some way I'm sure it's beneficial for them to know - it breaks my heart to remember my daughters chewing on furniture like dogs. And the hours upon hours of scraping dried poop off the walls and furniture. And the hours of washing dried poop out of sheets and blankets and pillows. Throwing out stuffed animals that just couldn't be cleaned.

I know that I'm not alone in all this. I know there are countless other parents that have gone through this. I know that the "lost memories" are still in my head somewhere and that they'll come back at some point. I know they'll flash into my head someday and I'll smile when I can remember my daughters first steps and the first time they fed themselves.

Knowing all this now - doesn't make the "not going to happens" and lost memories any easier to live with.