On a good day, parenting will test the integrity of your character. On a bad day, parenting will test your will to live. Parenting children with trauma histories will cause you to test the integrity of everything and everyone you thought you knew, for the rest of your life.
~J. Skrobisz

Monday, January 2, 2012

Cautious Optimism

Honeymoon's over. She is on red-level for behavior for being physically aggressive, sexual ideation, disrespect, not accepting limits ...

But hey, she didn't rage! She's still only displaying tantrums and shouting provoking things at us to try to get us to engage. No "SIB" [1].

The IFI team has some repeat therapists from before March 2010 which is helpful because too many new faces and I would go insane! We're going to concentrate on family therapy this time. We'll see how well that works out with AB.

WG has already asked for her own individual therapist so I'll do an intake with the agency this week to make that happen. Poor kid, she's got to blow off some major steam in a healthy way! Both AB and WG have already asked me several times, "How long is Sissy staying this time?" They've not been too pleased when I parrot the same response every time they've asked: The doctors and therapists at the hospital felt that Sissy was ready to try again at home. We're going to be positive and support her so she can be successful this time.

It's back to the grind for us tomorrow. Sissy will start out in an isolated EBD classroom with her OHI IEP. After benchmarks and 60 days, the team will reconvene to determine if she should remain in the EBD class through the end of the year, transition to the gen.ed population at the same school or switch back to AB and WG's school. For me it means transporting to two different schools in addition to picking up Sissy a whole hour earlier than the other two because her program ends at 2:30. We'll see how this works out with my volunteer time in the EIP classroom in the afternoons. [2] I could opt-in for bus transport for her but since AB and WG are attending their school on a waiver making me liable for their transport to and from, I can't take the chance that waiting on a bus to transport Sissy will make me late in getting the other two to and from. And neither can I risk leaving her unattended in the house or waiting for a bus.

All in all, I'd say Sissy discharging right at the break and holidays has been in her best interest because she hasn't gone straight back to "normal" living and the regular demands of household and school life. She's been given the opportunity to transition slowly after being so isolated at the hospital for so long. Just going to the grocery store is difficult for her because it's all a relearning process for her. LOTS of reteaching, LOTS of redirection, LOTS of normal activities taken twice or three times the effort and time. At least I've not had to throw homework, extracurricular activities and working into that festering melting pot! We'll see how we fair this week. By Friday, I may be locked up myself ... or rejoicing that it was a great week.

Here's to cautious optimism!

[1] SIB: self-injurous behavior
[2] My original plan was to volunteer in the EIP room to see if I would want to return to teaching full time. Guess what? I don't. Yowza, no way, no how. I'm done with education as a career. Volunteering? Sure. Being responsible for the whole kit and caboodle? Not a chance.


GB's Mom said...

It is a good thing for you to know that you aren't meant to teach. It will be exciting to see what your future brings!

Anonymous said...

1. glad to hear that SIB is not happening. sometimes it's real and sometimes it's used to hold folks hostage. either way, people hurt. hope it stays gone.

2. can't blame you at all! it gets crazier in the classroom every day. problem is, this is all i know how to do!