I do plan on watching Parenthood tonight. According to my commentor, the parents will be telling the boy that he has Aspergers.
I'm not sure if former President Bush ever gave broccoli another try, but I will be tuning in tonight to see how it goes.
Besides, everyone and everything deserves a second chance, right?
Now onto the blog....
When I think of chances - and taking them - I also think of change. Because giving a new television show a chance, a new therapy, a new school, even a new person in your life all essentially lead to change. Beginning the supplement at night for Sean changed our lives. Going to Children's Memorial Hospital in Chicago changed our lives. Making the decision to start a family changed our lives.
We are all about change. Even if our lives are so routine and mundane that we can sleepwalk through our days, life is changing.
We loathe routine and yet we crave it at the same time.
In January, Sean began taking two classes every morning at the local junior high. Afterwards, he would be transported to his regular day school.
I wrote this in my journal that first frightening day...
First day of junior high. Big day. Five years of special ed and finally, finally, a first day..... He'll start with two classes and then we'll go from there.
I'm sick this morning. Utterly incapable of celebrating and taking part in this momentous occasion.... except to remind my husband to not forget to pack Sean's lunch. Binder? Check. Special pencils sharpened and put in case? Check. Locker combo in jacket pocket? Check.
Everything was set. I took a picture and off he went....
I am grateful that I exist in a fog of antibiotics, anti-histamines, anti-anythings right now because if I weren't, I'd be completely freaking out....
What was I so scared of that day? What was Sean scared of? It was the change in routine. It was taking a chance at doing something different. Would he fail? Would he succeed? How would it affect our lives?
That day I wished life could be like the day before and the day before that.... Although being integrated was something that we had always worked towards, the moment it happened I wanted our old lives back. Give me the routine of the bus coming in the morning, the daily reports on his behaviour. Give me the comfort level where the staff and I can go by first names.
Give me the routine because I don't want this change. I was scared. Scared for everyone including Sean.
As it turns out, Sean had a great day. He loved it. And now this week where he has to attend his regular school full-time for ISAT testing, he is bummed. I worried about the change in our new routine while he worried about missing out on all the new possibilities of the day that the junior high - with almost ten times the number of students and vast corridors to walk and explore - held for him.
When we think about our autistic children, routine is everything. It overruns us because we see the routine of our children as sometimes being a rock hanging from our shoulders and slowing us down.
But think about this.... How do we react and feel when we don't get our morning caffeine fix? What about the traffic jam? Or sleeping through the alarm? Or getting some unexpected change at work?
Changes in our routine - even minute ones - can really throw us off. We can have a bad day as a result of one, minor change.
In essence, we want routine in our lives as much as our children do.
So when we have those moments and think our children are different from everyone else.... think again.
Are they really?