Wednesday, September 9, 2009

The First Days of School: Charlie Brownish Hope

It only seems like yesterday that I was posting about the last days of school. But here we are again.

After what can only be called a very successful summer (with several bumps in the road), I still found myself extremely nervous about the new school year. Maybe it was the "I hate you!" Robbie shouted repeatedly as I dragged him into the hellish first day of summer school in June. Maybe it was the "I hate her! I'm supposed to be in Ms. Soandso's class!" storm we endured the night before the first day of school. Or maybe I'm just a worrier.

Three weeks into it, school has been a borderline miracle. We have yet to have a morning meltdown (including every step: wake up -> get dressed -> get in the car -> get out of the car). He's doing all his work in school. We've had zero bad reports so far (other than a few minor concerns, like he didn't want to do something in gym or he didn't want to go to speech and be separate from the classroom).

Why the big change? There could be a few reasons:

1) He does not want to go to summer school next year. Joy has done a wonderful job of explaining the cause and effect of his school behavior and summer school. Last year he "qualified" for summer school. He really doesn't want to do it again.

2) He has an excellent teacher. She's certified in special education and seemed to be ready from the start to have Robbie as a student. We met with her a few days before school and exchanged ideas. She met with his teacher from last year to learn what worked for her. She was prepared.

3) He's taking a new medicine. He recently switched from Strattera to Concerta to deal with ADHD issues. I'm glad Joy made this decision with his doctor. The changes were almost immediate and all positive.

4) He wants a Wii for his birthday (which is Monday). We'll see on Tuesday if this is the driver.

We're trying to enjoy this the best we can but it's hard not to wait for the other shoe to drop. Or for Lucy to pull back the football. Or some other cliche. When these parties end, it's a crushing blow. It's hard not to let them erase the good experiences no matter how long their duration.

For now, we're just going to enjoy the hell out of it. If something changes, it changes.

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