If ever there was a post that deserved the TL;DR response, this would be it. Sorry - I just feel like venting a bit.
I had been doing so good at posting in this month after NaBloPoMo, but clearly after taking three days off I'm starting to slip. Let me tell you about the day that led me to take a blogging break.
Saturday was an all hockey all day occasion. It started with the usual Special Hockey practice from 9:45 to 10:45 with a 40 minute drive to get there and 15 minutes worth of gear application before starting. I know I've posted before how much I love Special Hockey - the tremendous amount of volunteer support, the true joy in even the most minor victories, the time I get to network with other parents dealing with similar challenges. This practice felt more frustrating for me. Msk skates so well, but he just doesn't get the concept of working in a team or even wanting to be in the middle of a crowd. These are such basic concepts that relate to so much in life. At the moment I'm seeing no progress, and it bums me out.
After practice there was a game in Hershey PA at 2:30, followed by tickets to a 7:00 game with the Hershey Bears. Given the drive time there was basically just time for lunch. We had lunch at a fast food joint with a play place. Sometimes I wonder if msk will ever come to grips with the idea that even if he likes climbing and sliding, he is labeled as too big to play in these places. He didn't melt down, but he obsessively repeated the conversation we had about him being too big. I know he wouldn't break anything or hurt any of the little kids, but he has a hard enough time with rules without me doing any flip-flopping. His sorrow was infectious.
After lunch, I drove with another special needs parent and his son. The company was a life-saver, because that much car time with msk all by myself (40min to practice, 3:40 round trip to Hershey, for a total of about 4.5 hours) can be a bit much. He can get stuck on an echolalic pattern and work himself into a frenzy and although the best thing to do is ignore him that's hard when I'm not allowed to turn the radio on. With company and interaction we both did a lot better.
On the other hand, the conversation turned to our growing kids and the challenge to get a decent education out of the school system for kids with very significant disabilities. Because I'm looking towards msk's next placement, horror stories about other City Schools increase my anxiety level. The story I heard was very horrific, but it's not my story, so I won't tell it here.
At the hockey game in Hershey msk was totally disengaged. I don't think he hit the puck once and he was never in the action. That coupled with a statement about him inappropriately touching a female team member (which I'm not 100% sure of and there's no way he'll defend himself if it is false), and I felt like crying through the whole game.
Between his game and the Bear's game we went to the park. Nothing horrible happened, but a simple spur of the moment jaunt to an amusement park is so much more complicated with two special need kids in tow. Usually, I get a charge from how much msk loves rides, but the cold, number of rides closed and the ratio of line time to ride time all came together to make me grumpy.
After the cold of the park, sitting in the warmth of the Hershey Bear's game was nice. Unfortunately, I could barely get msk to glance at the game. I don't think he saw any connection from what he did see to his own performance on a hockey team. He spent the majority of the time we watched the game playing on his new iPod or watching lights and numbers on the jumbotron hanging over the rink.
It was way past msk's bedtime and pretty close to my own bedtime when we got home. I think it was 10:30 or 10:45.
Tomorrow's post will be back on the positive side. Sorry.