I woke up Thursday with symptoms of a stomach bug. It didn’t surprise me because the girls have had them too. I wasn’t positive it was a bug though. I kept questioning…could it be nerves. On Tuesday, our amazing advocate observed Courtney at school. I wasn’t very happy with the report so I had that on my mind and Thursday evening was also when Joe and I were attending Courtney’s parent/teacher conferences. When I went to call in sick, I was feeling so guilty because I couldn’t help but think that as soon as the conferences were over I was going to feel just fine which means I missed work because of nerves. Now I do think I had a little bit of a bug, but I’m pretty sure it was exasperated by nerves because about a half hour after the conferences I was feeling some what better. In fact, I’m writing right now from my classroom so was well enough to go back to work.
I wish I didn’t let this stuff bother me to the point of literally being sick to my stomach, but when it comes to the education of my little girl, I can’t help but be that passionate about making sure she is getting the education she deserves. I question if she is getting what she deserves when I get reports that she gets to pretty much do what she wants in her classroom during most of the day. I question how her typical peers feel about her when they are required to follow her lead as she goes from center to the next without and missing out on enjoying playing at that center. I question if the other special needs children in the class are getting what they need when I hear that one stood at the water table just stemming for 45 minutes! I question if she is getting the support she needs when I hear from the teacher that she sat on the floor with her snow pants around her ankles and her boots on for 15 minutes with the ability to take of her boots (though hard) but for some reason at that moment wasn’t taking them off. Are they teaching her how to ask for help? Is this what inclusion looks like? Is this really the best way to teach these kiddos? What am I missing that makes this such a great way to teach children with autism? Yes, I am ecstatic that she is happy at school and that she can tolerate being in a larger class. I am ecstatic that she is making progress (note: she is in 15 hours of private therapy too). I am very happy that she is loved by her teachers. That is all positives and I am thankful for that. But I can’t help but wonder where she would be if she was in a class that is more appropriate for her.