Wednesday, April 10, 2013

IEP Burnout

It sat there on the counter, ready, waiting. It's metal gleaming, the cord still tightly wound from the night before. I wanted so much to snatch it up and use it like any other morning. Yes... a smoothie. It's about 75 degrees this morning a smoothie would be wonderful. But it sits there, staring at me. It knows what it did and my finger throbs in confirmation of its crime. I divert my eyes, busy myself. It's an object after all, it has no control over me! I grab the bananas and some frozen fruits from the freezer, some chia seeds, honey, my protein powder and probiotics, yes an excellent start for the day. I look at the bounty that will be my smoothie on the counter and smile. But I can feel the glare of the machine behind me.

Somewhere in the wee traces of my mind I want to believe that it was a total manifestation of Stephen King's Maximum Over Drive and this Hand Mixer, my and MacLeod's previously adored Boom Stick (see here where eggs are no match for it) was possessed, but I know with the rest of my fully functional brain (mostly) that  that is not the case.

The truth is it's been a very rough few months in Special Needs world for us with therapy and school and with kiddo's IEP, which has seemed to take the latter part of eternity to work out this year, I think I am a little strung out. I spent last weekend pouring over 16 IEP's from Pre-school through 4th grade, numerous diagnostic studies, follow-up clinics, feeding clinics, report after report and study. I filed until my eyes burned. Then I cried till my eyes swelled shut. Looking at so many years of reports and studies you can see patterns and things that you don't see otherwise, things I wish I had seen. I have never been in denial about his need for help, never. But I have never seen the full picture either and looking at everything, I do. I think I have spent so much time in the daily grind pushing for services and pushing for services I haven't sat back and studied the results enough. The people who are providing the services have not paid enough attention to the results because otherwise the services would have been provided in a manner different than they have been. In many cases the recommendations in many of these reports have been clearly ignored. I feel  that I have failed to advocate strong enough for him.

So how does that get me back to that evil Hand Mixer? Well, yesterday kiddo was evaluating with a new occupational therapist. In addition to that it was his regularly scheduled OT and Speech Therapy day. SO getting home he had a good amount of homework. The rule of thumb, because we have BIG meltdown issues with homework, is that he is to complete a minimum of a solid 30 minutes of work. If I can get him to work 30 minutes and he does well, I try to reward him and ask him to go longer. If it is not going well I don't push. Last night it was bad. Meltdowns, throwing things, hitting himself, tears and talking about how he would rather be dead, etc. Grandma was here trying to help, but he was in a really bad place. I was desperately trying to throw something together for dinner as well, queue Hand Mixer. They were on the deck and I was in the kitchen. I was popping in and out trying to redirect him and puree meat with the Hand Mixer.  Now... before you say... "Mom, why were you pureeing meat with a Hand Mixer anyway"... I know, I know it was not a smart move already. Hindsight, folks, hindsight.

MacLeod walks in the door about 30 minutes from work early. Queue distraction number 3. (I love you hon' but my brain was a mile a minute) "What can I do... what can I do..." Me: "ummm...."
 (that is about the sound the mixer made as the blade caught my finger as I tried to move meat out from being stuck in the blade)

  *Shreik maybe heard by dogs and dolphins*....Oh my God, Oh my God....."

McLeod: "Come here, get it under water." (So calm! He was a Boy Scout, ya know.)

Grandma: "Holy *#$%, what did you do!? Towel, pressure, get it up!!!!" (not as calm.)

So I am not one of those wusses who flees to the ER often, but by the looks of the blood flow and such, I though perhaps it warranted a trip. We packed up the foods, thank goodness no blood got in my chicken and headed to the ER.

Evidently that nail will fall out, ew.
Three hours and that many stitches later and I was back home with my painful finger and remaining feelings of idiocy. Grandma stayed with the kiddos and they were tucked away when I got home. I was greeted in bed by a note from Lil Sis that said that she hoped my finger felt better. She has such a good heart.

I, of course do not blame anyone for my distraction and being dumb enough to get my finger caught in the blade of a moving mixer. Not kiddo or McLeod. I think the culmination of everything  has left me just not really that present or maybe trying to be everywhere all the time, and I can't. I feel like I need to slow down and speed up all at the same time to keep it all together.

The one thing I do know is that now, after seeing all I have seen in all kiddos IEP's and with his upcoming meeting, things will be better for him, that I will make certain.

So, in the end I did make my smoothie. I have to admit that when I first hit the button and the thing spun and whorled the first time after whipping around my finger last night, my stomach flipped a little. Damn you Stephen King.  

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