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Thursday, January 28, 2010

Going to an IEP Meeting is Like Getting a Root Canal. By Your Mechanic. In the Back of Your Car. Without Novocaine.

We've got it all wrong with the waterboarding.

You want to get terrorists to talk, get them to sit through a few IEP (that's Individualized Education Program for those of you missing out on these rambunctious little get togethers) meetings and they'll be admitting they invented trans fats.

Monchichi's is tomorrow. 
As in, C.R.A.P.

It's that time of year again, when I get to try, with the least amount of hysterics possible, to convince our local school district that my special needs son deserves having a few extra pennies invested towards his academic progress and overall well-being.  The district has their own opinion on this matter; mainly, he's got his own desk complete with a lopsided chair, and there's a flushing toilet down the hall.  So what more could I possibly expect from them?

How about putting aside that big fat bottom line for a moment, loosening that clearance rack tie, and remembering, for just one teeny tiny second, that a child is at stake here. 
Not just any child either.
My child. 

I'm not high maintenance. 
I don't ask for horseback therapy or private dolphin swimming sessions. 
Not because I don't believe they are helpful.  Hell, I get out of bed each morning because I choose hope instead of hoplessness.  I just don't think the school district should be footing the bill for a romp with flipper. 

But, I do have a problem with politics and head games.
As in, why the frack are you trying to take away speech therapy from a non-verbal child,
or
reduce physical therapy from a boy who comes home covered in bruises because he can't keep up on the playground and has the balance of a three-legged coffee table?

I don't believe in burning bridges.  For my son's sake I keep it civil.
I don't throw tantrums, I don't make threats.  I pray for guidance and I try to not hate the service coordinator before I've gotten to know her.  But, as the teachers and therapists throw around words like "goals" and "benchmarks" and "80% accuracy,"  it's hard not to look across the table and stare into her beady little eyes, and wonder what it must be like to crush the futures of innocent children for a living.  Does she deny our son what he so desperately needs and then laughs about it over kung pao chicken during lunch?

Listen.
I'm no fool.
Having Autism in America is infinately better then having it in say, Siberia.
And if you've been reading this blog as faithfully as you let on, then you also know that I practice gratitude as often as possible.  Even when I'd much rather stick out my tongue, throw myself on the ground, and kick and scream my way to victory.  So I get it.  Yay America.  Yay running water.  Yay for not forcefully institutionalizing our beloved offspring (anymore).
Does that mean I have to settle for beady-eyed service coordinators? 
Maybe. 
But I don't have to settle for what she says is good enough for my son.
And tomorrow, when I sit among a roomful of people claiming to know what's best for him,
I'm going to make sure everyone understands
that the only person who's qualified to make such a pompous claim

is me.







3 comments:

Lisa said...

Hillarious opening. So funny. And, as always, a heart-touching post.

Asia said...

go get them jo jo!

Crystal D said...

How was it? Filling or Root Canal?

I hope it was more like a routine cleaning.

{{{hugs}}}