The frequent and delightful updates that normally appear on this blog have been interrupted by a charming case of mono.


Charlie's getting help

We haven't had his ARD yet, but they finished his evaluations today. One of the members of the team stopped by my classroom to tell me

*Charlie is adorable and she wishes she could take him home
*Charlie is very busy and must be exhausting
*She saw several indicators of autism and, while it's not official, will agree with the neurologist's diagnosis.
*She definitely sees clear areas of work to be done
*He will need a new placement and agrees with me that it should be PPCD. His teacher is not going to be able to meet his needs and he needs a different environment.
*He's very teachable and we've clearly taught him a lot.
*We cannot know his IQ until his behaviors and focus interfere less with his academics, but she does not have any indication that it will be low.
*That we have done an incredible job working with him. It is rare that she sees a child on the spectrum who does as well as he does, and she is impressed both that we've known what to do with him and that we've done it so well.
*That he definitely needs work on social skills. Its the area in which he's furthest behind. Of course it is--it's the one we simply can't teach at home and couldn't work on when preschools wouldn't take him as a student. 

I mentioned that what I would like to see is him finishing this year out in PPCD and then having a second year. My other August born child didn't start school at five, and waiting until six has made all the difference. Since Charlie tends to be about a year and a half to two years behind, waiting that year will compensate for some of those differences. She said that is a possibility, also that they have done half PPCD/half kindergarten years for students that often work well.

They still have a lot of paperwork to do to get it in motion. Their reports are generally 20+ pages long and must be completed before the ARD meeting. The Individualized Education Plan (IEP) will be solidified at this meeting. From what she said, they will have it all ready for him to start in his new placement in January.

I cannot tell you how relieved I am. It's not all up to me anymore.


For the records

On Monday, Charlie said his entire ABCs. He swaps out S and Z and is infuriated if you try to sing along, but we'll take it.

Today, he actually smiled and posed for the camera! I never knew a school yearbook photo could make me so happy!


stealthy and naked

Yesterday, Charlie was sneaking about the house, buck-naked. I told him to go get some clothes on. He said, "But I'm inbisible."

"Charlie, you're naked. Go get clothes on," I repeat

"You tan't see me, Im inbisible," he insists.

I counter that with, "But I can see your skin."

"My tin is inbisible," he counters. "Clothes is not inbisible."

Tan I do dat?

Charlie has discovered a new dimension: time.

It started while I was making Halloween costumes. I was working on Larry Boy and he asked me, "Tan you make me a cat costume for da next Halloween?"

Finally an indication that, in Charlie's mind, not all events occur in real-time. He understands that there will be another Halloween.

He's also started asking, "Tan you save dis for later?" when he doesn't want to eat something at just that moment. I've saved away the last half ounce of something that he will never again return to, just because it thrills me to no end that he gets that there will be a later.

He had a little fun-sized package of M&Ms left after Halloween. With two little candies left in the grubby yellow bag, he handed them over to me. "Tan you put dis away? I need it to be way up high so Schrodinger don't get it. He likes dat."

I hide my candy from the cat all the time, buddy. I know what you mean.

The word CAN has opened up so many things for him. Instead of insisting that, THAT VERY MOMENT, whatever he wants must happen, he has started asking, "Tan I do dat?" If we respond with a no, he has even begun asking if he can do it, 'da next dey.'

For so long, everything has been that instant and that moment. It's such a relief that there's a future in his mind now.


Would you like to come stare at my children?

This week, Dixie's teachers filled out questionnaires for her ADD/ADHD evaluation.

On Tuesday, Melody left campus for a few hours to do the first half of her gifted and talented testing.

On Thursday, the special ed team came by to watch Charlie in his classroom as part of his autism evaluation.

Perhaps, if you don't want to stare at them, you could come stare at me a bit? If the exterior view is not enough, I have an entire complement of X-rays of my neck and spine following last week's minor car accident. 

Come to think of it, no one has given Dowlan the once-over. For anyone interested, we'll be home all day tomorrow, unpacking. Come view the native male in his unnatural and chaotic habitat.

I have leftover lasagna for afterwards.