Sunday, November 16, 2008

Sunday Snippets

Contrary to popular belief, I am still alive. And I have discovered that life goes on, even if I have failed to update my blog since Wednesday.

I tried to get back here on Friday to participate in Jennifer's 7 Quick Takes meme kind of thing over at Conversion Diary. Obviously, even the "quick take" was too much for me to manage, since I posted no takes of any kind.

So I'm subscribing to the philosophy of better late than never, and I am doing some snippets on a Sunday. Not original, but just about all I can manage right now. I'm sure you'll be riveted by this post.

(Oh, and if you aren't reading Conversion Diary, you should. Jennifer is a fantastic thinker and writer with a compassionate streak a mile wide. That combo is pretty hard to find these days.)

Apparently, I live under a huge rock, because I just looked at my calendar and realized that I have less than two weeks until Thanksgiving. And I am hosting the family Thanksgiving dinner!

The fact that Thanksgiving is right around the corner, means that Advent is nipping close on its heels. And with Advent comes Christmas shopping. And with Christmas shopping comes copious amounts of ibuprofen. Or wine. Whichever. (Oh, but it also means my favorite Christmas music, so that's good.)
It can be mighty disheartening when your child's principal tells you that she can "mandate changes in the schedule to accommodate your son, but [she] cannot mandate a change in his teacher's attitude." FAN-tastic.

It's hard to know that the teacher thinks of your child as the problem child.

For those of you fellow Blogger bloggers, what is the deal with Followers? I use a reader, so I'm late to the Follower party. I'm wondering if you like using the Follower feature better, and why?

Also? I've given up on Twitter --at least for a while. It's just too much. I don't update my Facebook account either. It feels good to get that out there.

Teacher conferences make me nervous. Even when they are for the child who is an excellent student. While listening to the teacher tell us how well Francie is doing, I still managed to pick nervously at my cuticle enough to make it bleed. I mean, I need a Band-Aid stat! kind of bleeding. I may be certifiable.

I recently received information I had requested from a home schooling program, and I subsequently received a follow-up call from a woman affiliated with the program. She began the hard sell for home schooling pretty much from the word "hello."

I told her my reasons for considering home schooling Fiver, and I also told her that I am a fan of home schooling, even though I don't do it myself at this time. I know many wonderful families who do.

She continued her pitch, and I continued to expand on some of the issues we are facing with Fiver. I mentioned that we were trying to get him a full time classroom aide, to which she replied, "Well, that's good for now, but at some point he'll just become the 'retard with the aide'. Kids are cruel."

What, now, what?!?

I know kids are cruel, but apparently, so are adults. Maybe calling my kid a retard is not the best way to recruit my patronage of your program.

I wasn't even that mad, just amazed. And she didn't turn me off of the idea of home schooling, either.

But still.

Thankfully, I have rediscovered the fact that kindred spirits can never be underestimated. I had the chance this week to meet up with a friend I have not seen in over a year, but no matter. We picked up like we had seen each other the week before, falling into an easy conversation that spanned the range of topics from the economy to Asperger's Disorder to the guilty pleasure that is Twilight to hiding our reading material from our precocious daughters.

These kinds of friends, they are a balm to me.

Upon closer inspection of this list, I can see just how emotional this week has been. And I have felt it down to my bones.

It is no wonder then, that I have not posted much, since my M.O. has ever been to call retreat from the world when I am weary or sad.

But tomorrow is a new day, "fresh with no mistakes in it," as Anne-with-an-e would say. Thank God for that.


  1. I might email you separately about Fiver's school situation (even though I work in a different county/district). BUT: True, the principal can't change a teacher's attitude per se BUT the principal should have influence on said teacher's outward actions. Especially if that teacher's actions could be viewed as discriminatory towards your child. Just saying... Maybe this teacher feels overwhelmed because he/she knows your child's needs aren't being met BUT that teacher shouldn't be venting frustration onto your son. He/She should be addressing it with the principal and providing valid information to support the concerns. My local district has been EXTREMELY difficult to work with this year so I've about had it with schools not owning up to the responsibility to educate. My experience isn't as personal as yours- I end up involved with this type of thing via my job. But my kids will be in school in the next few years. It burns me (and scares me!) to see the cracks in our educational system. I truly hope that something works out in your favor!

  2. Can't believe that homeschooling pitch included the word "retard" in it.... good heavens. And, I could write a book on the cracks in the public school home school we are using this year... still no help for my oldest. Although the fact that I am tailoring the curriculum to fit his needs is help enough, for now.
    Sending prayers and a few strong drinks your way!

  3. I'm so offended by the homeschooler's comments. Please, PLEASE don't think she speaks on behalf of all of us homeschoolers!

    Hope you have a better week this week than last!

  4. I completely understand the whole retreating from the world when life gets tough. If I'm not blogging semi-regularly it is probably some emotional chaos is ensuing.
    You (and Fiver) are in my prayers.

  5. I miss you guys. Sorry I couldn't come up to see you all the other day. Don't fret with the Thanksgiving stuff -- I'll cook whatever you need. I'll call you sometime this week to plan it out. If you need to talk, you can always call me or Johanna!

  6. right... what he said... i think you have my number... if not, call JB... he better have it! :)

  7. Christmas...start online now. Just do it.
    School... Homeschooling is a great choice. I have 9 nieces/nephews who have been or are being homeschooled and it is/was a great fit for 8 of the 9. That lady was "reaching" for ways to sway you with her icy words.
    On the other hand...I have had a few students with Aspergers at the middle school levels and they were doing fine. (Feel free to email me if you would like to know more.)

    I am not liking the following thing that much. When you click on the the update, you only view the current post and I want to see the whole blog, so I go to the website anyway.

    Have a great day Amy.

  8. Ok, I am super offended by the homeschooling lady's words as someone who works with kids with mental retardation everyday. How dare she. How dare she! Thank the good Lord that you have more patience than myself, because then there might be a murder to report. I am spitting mad. Yes, kids are cruel. Yes, they make fun of other kids. But guess what, having a child that is "normal" does not protect your child from cruel words or actions. I'm "normal" and I was still made fun of quite a bit when I was a were you, I know. And beyond that, it is already politically incorrect to call someone mentally retarded anymore (the correct terminology now is intellectually disabled), and definitely not a good way to sell someone on something. I see kids everyday who are MR and have other issues - autism, Asperger's, PDD, etc. - and they are some of the most bighearted people I have ever met. They are people too, and although kids may be cruel towards them, that means that adults should set the example that much more. Shame on her...

    And as John and Johanna said, don't worry about Thanksgiving, I think I might bring a yummy WW dish. And it'll just be a relaxed day. Also, like them, if you need to talk, you know where to call.

  9. I don't do much with Facebook either. I've been using it mostly to stay in touch with family and friends from college.
    But you're still gonna get Kidnap and Food Fling requests from me. Just ignore them. I'm keeping my friend list small and this is one of the few ways I can level up.

    Hope this week is good to you!

  10. Bless your heart, that is a heck of a week. And you are such a good person to not just spew expletives at that home-school curriculum representative. What a horrible thing to say.

    I hope this week is better for you, and I will pray for you and your family.

  11. I find the word "retard" very offensive and my children know not to utter it in my presence. If I were you, I'd go up the ladder in that homeschool organization and report the person who spoke to you. That's extremely unprofessional. Not to mention that she is preying on your, don't walk in another direction.

    Don't know what to tell you about the school. I'm sure the teacher is frustrated & overwhelmed and the principal cannot mandate an attitude, but the principal CAN offer support AND communicate to the teacher about what is expected.

    I don't access blogs through the Follow feature; I kind of use it as an addition to my blogroll. But mostly I use a feeder so my follow list is way incomplete.

  12. Oh my. The retard thing just left me speechless. Aimee, what a heavy decision to weigh-school or homeschool. No wonder you've been blogging less.

    With you in spirit.

  13. I am so sorry about what that homeschooler said to you. I promise, we are not all like that. Homeschooling is a huge decision! I have never regretted it or questioned it, but I have not always liked it. You need to do what is best for you and your family despite what anyone else says! I will be praying for you!

    I have been struggling like crazy lately, too. Very down in the dumps, blah, etc. and I definitely have felt like just dropping out of life for awhile, but I guess I can't.

    I so wish we lived closer...we could totally support each other through the blahs! But just know that I am praying for you long distance and thinking about you!

  14. I'm pretty sure she can mandate a change in the teacher's attitude. It's called having her in to the office and telling her to change her attitude or she can retire.


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