Four of my five children have required IEPs or 504s during their school careers. I have attended so many meetings and evaluations over the years and it can be pretty overwhelming.
The first two kids to go through school were both sent for evaluations through the child study team during pre-k. We were lucky enough to have a very experienced pre-k teacher that noticed almost immediately that my kids could benefit from some additional support. Every person involved in this process was kind and understanding but frankly, there is a LOT you need to know to protect yourself and your child or things can slip by you undetected. Unfortunately, some of this was learned the hard way but I’m pretty well versed now.
When you go in to review the results of these evaluations, it can be pretty disheartening. You sit and listen to specialists in multiple areas of education and development tell you everything that is wrong with your kid. It can be very hard to hear and comprehend that your baby needs help, I’ve cried more than once.
Fast forward to yesterday. I got an e-mail from my youngest child’s pre-k teacher (who is an angel on Earth by the way) indicating that he may benefit from an OT evaluation due to some issues with self-regulation and difficulty with transitions. He already has an IEP in place and has been under early intervention since before he turned 3 for speech so this wasn’t totally out of the blue. She advised that during class he was unhappy with the colors he was provided with to complete his butterfly project so he crumpled it up and threw it to the ground.
Part of me wants to just celebrate his “fuck this shit” attitude but then I remember that this isn’t how life works. Seriously, though how awesome would it be to just toss shit in the trash when you decide you’ve had enough? My boss would probably not appreciate if I just didn’t complete something because it was annoying me though, so some coping skills will probably benefit him in the long run. Needless to say, I signed the consent today so let’s add “smallest child needs OT” to the list of 478 things I’m already trying to stay on top of.
This is probably an awesome time to tell you that yesterday the school called because apparently I never submitted the kids lunch orders, leaving them with no food for the week. Nothing like leaving your kids hungry to make you feel like a real piece of shit! Luckily, the cafeteria ladies are amazing and had extra food AND took their orders for the rest of the week to cover for my lack of completing necessary tasks (like feeding the humans I created). Thank you, lunch ladies *sincerest heart emoji*!
I’m not sure who let me be an adult, I’m not super great at it. Today I panicked at 10:58am when I realized that my 11am meeting was a video call. Why did you panic, Amanda? You knew you had a meeting, it was on your Outlook calendar after all. Yeah, it was. You’re right. BUT I didn’t bother to see that it was a zoom call and when I clicked the link I was wearing a tie-dyed sweat suit with my hair looking like I just busted out of Azkaban and was drinking out of a mug that said “Fuck off I am crocheting”.
Cry for help: HOW DO YOU DO IT?!??! How do you stay organized? Remember things, keep track of it all? I can use all the help I can get! Do you use a paper calendar/planner/organizer? Is digital better? Does your brain just function? What’s that like?