Saturday, March 19, 2011

Trevor.....and the guilt

I almost waited to do this post because it is going to be a hard post for me. I have an extreme amount of guilt I am dealing with when it comes to him.

Don't ask me why he was in our dryer.... Scott took these pictures. I asked him about it and he didn't remember why Trevor was in the dryer either. But it's funny.

Here is another picture I love. When I am really busy I can usually talk Trevor into holding or feeding Kaitlyn for me. He will usually do it for a few minutes. He does NOT like her spitting up and freaks out when she does. In fact seconds after I took these pictures he got spit up on and had to take a bath. No... not because it was that bad, but because he freaks out. But the pictures are sweet.

Now for the update.
Trevor is really struggling right now. There is just no way to sugar coat it. I am tired of pretending things are going splendidly around here, because they aren't.
Of course this all goes back to the end of my pregnancy and when Kaitlyn was born. All 3 of the boys had the adjustment to deal with. We knew that. That really isn't the stresser here. It just happens that the pregnancy was one of the reasons we are where we are now.
Some background: Trevor and Jordan moved to a Charter School this school year. It has been great for Jordan. He is learning so much more than I can even believe and is being challenged like he needs. Trevor has struggled. I did research and talked to several people including the board of directors before making the choice to move the boys. Theyassured me over and over that they were set up for special needs kids, had a speech, OT and PT onsite, ect. I expected some bumps because this was the first year for Good Foundations Academy (GFA). In september we met as an IEP team for his yearly review. At that time school was going great, he had an awesome teacher and was happy. We made the decision to move from an IEP to a 504 since he was doing OK with the curriculum, it was the modifications we needed. I signed all the paper work to do the full fledged testing since it was due January of this year. I was warned it would take a few weeks. No big deal. Then the end of the pregnancy happened, a couple outpatient visits to stop labor, Kaitlyn coming 6 weeks early.... and before I knew it Christmas break was here. I realized I had never seen his test results or heard from the school. Then in January Kaitlyn gets sick with RSV. Life becomes chaotic once again. I am taking Josh to several Dr. appts and evaluations, Jordan has a couple dentist appts, I was getting Trevor back into his bi-monthly therapy appts, and the list goes on. I talk to the lady I carpooled with and found out the director for special education was fired/quit over winter break and there had been NOBODY at the school until Feb 1st. I was so mad. Mostly at myself because this was something I should have known. I dropped the ball and didn't stay on top of things for Trevor. So I call the school and ask to have his teacher call me (she is awesome and called me several times over the school year). We have a good heart to heart. She tells me he is failing reading and writing, has a D in Math and Cs in the rest of his subjects. He is not keeping up with the accelerated pace the board decided to set over winter break. I leave several messages for the new guy who took over for the special ed and wait for him to contact me. In the meantime I basically do a lot of praying and talking and decide that it would be better for Trevor to go back to his old school H Guy Child. I get in contact with the special education head there, who is awesome and remembers us and was so happy to hear Trevor was coming back. I finally hear from the guy at GFA and he apologizes to me and tells me that the school really did drop the ball big time and let Trevor fall through the cracks. He had only been there for like 2 weeks. He said it was so bad he called the State in to audit the school and get them back on track. I told him I just wanted Trevor's file and former IEP ready to get sent to his new school. I then go and get him registered and wait for the file to get there so we can decide how bad things are and what to do. He was out of school for a total of 3 weeks. It was lot's of fun. LOL.
So this past monday both Trevor and Jordan started at H Guy Child. When the school got his file and I talked to the Coordinator at H Guy Child she told me she was absolutely stunned at how bad his file was. There was paperwork missing, paperwork not done right and legally it was a mess. So for now we have Trevor in a normal 3rd grade classroom and are trying to get things going so he can be ready to go for next year. With how much work this will take it is basically like this year is a wash. I still don't know what is going on.
I just can't believe that GFA screwed up so badly! I think they are a great school with an awesome curriculum. They just aren't set up for special needs kids and they should have been honest with that in the beginning. They are basically trying to be a 'gifted' school without coming out and saying it. And that is great. I just wish they had decided all this before they opened their doors.
I know someone is probably going to tell me that it's not my fault this happened. I know that the school screwing up is not my fault. I am so angry with myself for not staying on top of what was going on. I have never been so out of the loop with Trevor and his education as I did this past school year. I am going to have a really hard time ever forgiving myself for this. As a parent with an autistic child, I KNOW I am his advocate. Nobody will stand up for him but me. And I even know that the second you let your guard down and forget to keep all this as a top priority.... THIS happens. And I have had so many parents of autistic kids tell me this and I vowed to NEVER let it happen to my son. And I did. And he is paying the price. His life is upside down right now and he has regressed in so many ways. And I will feel horrible about it until the day I die.
Now you know that life is not hunky dory at the Christensen house.
But, it's not the end of the world either. I got on my big girl panies and am fighting back. Hard. Life will eventually settle down and in a few months (yes it will take that long) we will be able to adjust to our new normal. It would just be nice to fast forward to that point. LOL!!!


Amy said...

Oh dear big sister. If anyone will fight it will be you. I know you aren't going to like me saying this, but not much of this was really your fault. Think about how much more you have going on with your life and kids compared to most families. That school should never had let that happen to Trevor. I can't believe the school didn't see the problem with his grades and not do something right then to work with him. I truly hope that he does better back at the other school. I may not be able to help there in person but I am only a phone call away if you need to talk or vent. We are praying for you guys. Love you!

Deb said...

I'm so sorry everything got so bad! A new baby is so hard even without the extras and you have TONS of extras between the kids. I agree with being upfront and honest. It's seriously irritating when people try to sound one way, but really mean another. Hang in there!

Desiree said... can only juggle so many balls at once. You amazing me at how much you can handle and how you pull off being such a great mom. Seriously. But I'm sorry you are bummed...but I'm not seeing this as your fault. You thought the school was your partner in helping Trevor and they dropped the ball. Not cool. Hang in there! We are praying for ya!

Lori said...

melissa, i agree with what everyone else has said. but i also know that those feelings you have are totally valid and REAL. i'm so sorry. it's exhausting to always fight for your kids and you hope their advocates at school will actually help...and like you found sometimes it doesn't happen. i'm really sorry. you DO have your hands full. God has blessed you with 4 children that have extra needs. apparently you are a SAINT and we all need to learn from you. i will pray for angels to send you energy, self-confidence and the ability to trust you are doing the best you possibly can. big big big loves from GA.

maidmarian4 said...

((((HUGS)))) I can relate to being your child's advocate as my oldest has ADHD, gets resource for reading and math, and gets speech therapy. It's very difficult to keep everything on track all the time with each and every kid, along with anything else going on in one's life... maybe if it was one kid and nothing ever went haywire in life! :) You are a great mom and a great advocate for all your kiddos. Hang in there!