I hope you all had a nice day. Declan had a fabulous first day here at school. He learned new routines, completed a craft, played outside with new friends, and was a pleasure to have in class.
It’s my hope Declan came home with a huge smile on his face. He should be proud of himself!!”
Declan started Kindergarten – things are happily, going very well.
When I drop him off at school, he is still unable to make eye contact with his teacher, who is waiting outside to greet the students as they arrive. His head is down and he blocks their ability to see each other with his book bag. He sidles in the door to stand in line. Smiling.
He tells me each day his day was “Good!” Yes, that is still all the information I get, but hey,
The teacher and his special education teacher agree, and have let me know in notes like the one above, Declan is doing great.
They are smiling.
All signs point to one thing
Me – I’m smiling, too.
I am so happy that he has transitioned so well to school. The extra time in preschool, the extra attention to his needs – as frustrated as I was in the past, it was all WORTH IT.
Which made me think to the post I wrote one year ago. I was frustrated. I was sad. But I knew in my heart that everything was going to be okay.
So as I sit with my smile I look back at that post and share it again today. It just wasn’t his time then. It is now.
In His Time
I did a special needs mom “no-no” this morning. I allowed myself to compare Declan to others.
Today was the first day of school for our elementary school. My older 2 kids, Bobby and Catelyn, got their new clothes on, their new book bags, their packed lunches, their school supplies and headed down to the bus stop. Clean, polished, smiling and ready for a new school year.
The “Mom”arazzi was there, camera’s flashing, getting the first day of school pictures. Our bus stop has lots of kids.
Today, the bus stop had a new member. A little boy the same age as Declan was heading into the elementary school for his first day of Kindergarten.
I am very happy for this little boy – I am excited for all the kids on their first day of school. But seeing this little boy at the bus stop brought a wave of memories and new emotions.
When Declan and this boy were babies, us moms were pretty excited. Excited the boys would be the same age on the street, growing up together, doing sports teams together and of course, they would be in the same grade. But then Declan began to have some issues. And I completely forgot about our mom excitement until today.
Today I looked at the little boy and realized Declan was supposed to be standing next to him. That I was supposed to be down at the stop taking a picture of all 3 of my kids going into the elementary school, just like the other moms. But Declan wasn’t going to the elementary school today. Today as I waved goodbye to the kids from the driveway, Declan sat inside our house watching You Tube videos, eating his morning chicken, in a diaper.
Comparison is the thief of joy. There are a lot of times when I do not even see the delays with Declan, until I spend time with a child that is Declan’s age or slightly younger. Then I see Declan’s deficits. I feel sad for a moment. There are times I feel Declan was cheated out of something typical. Something easier. Then I realize how wrong I am.
I am so proud of all that Declan has been able to work through. This will be his fourth year in a preschool setting, but he is learning. Just at his own pace. He is making friends. He is very kind to the people around him. He makes me smile every day. He is very happy. He is pure love.
Declan’s time to start elementary school is coming, but it just isn’t today. I will stop letting my mind wander and compare him to others. He is so special and unique, mastering his own road. Declan shines every day in his own way.
I am so happy that he too will be able to go to school with the other kids. He will – when it is his time