Today was Brenden's IEP for next year. And guess what? I didn't cry this time!! I walked in, got to peak in to his classroom, with no worries. No fears. Just a few short months ago I was a wreck as I went for his IEP meeting. I did get some good news....they are allowing him to stay for extended school year (a.k.a Summer school). Typically, there has to be evidence that the child will regress over the summer without going an extra month for Summer school. Brenden's therapists don't feel in any way that he will lose what he has, but I really wanted him to stay in the routine of going to school as well as continuing therapy. And those who know me know that when it comes to my kids, I push for what I know is best. And push harder if I have to. And usually get what I want. He's approved :)
Last week when I picked Brenden up from school, Ms. Sue (his teacher) told me that he still wouldn't talk. (Except to the girls, of course.) As she was telling me this, he's sitting in the car asking me to take him to McDonald's for a hamburger. So of course, I was bewildered. At home, Brenden never. stops. talking. Literally. If it wasn't illegal and inhumane, I would be tempted to duct tape his mouth. He won't talk to the teachers or aides. I did learn today that he talks to his Speech Therapist thank goodness! So I made him a sticker chart and each day his teacher tells me if he deserves a sticker....when he gets 4 stickers (one for each day he's in school) he gets to go out for ice cream, McDonald's, or wherever. Hopefully it works. But I warned them. Once he starts, he won't stop. They need to enjoy the silence while they can!
Back to the IEP meeting. It went well. Pretty cut and dry. His goals are mostly the same. PT is working on getting him to transition from the walker into his chair so the aides won't have to lift him. OT is working on fine motor since he has some weakness in his fingers. Speech is just working on intelligibility (big word, I know) which is basically getting him to articulate his sounds and words so people can better understand him. Many people have commented that he is talking more clearly, so I think we are seeing progress. He continues to climb the rock wall and I continue to be thankful that I'm not there to see it because it would make me a nervous wreck.
On another note, it was this time last year that we were preparing for Brenden's big surgery. It is such a distant memory, but I still remember the emotion that surrounded the days leading up to it. There was really a lot of unknown going in, so I was a big ball of emotion. But looking back, wow what a difference a year makes!!! Never in a million years did I think we would be at this place. Other than some behavior issues, Brenden is doing so amazing. And by behavior issues, I mean that we will be lucky to make it to his 4th birthday unscathed. I keep hearing that 3 is a really tough age, and boy does it seem to be true! But, he continues to be "such a delight" at school....
Not much longer until I take a temporary plea of insanity while Jonathan is away for work :)