Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Finding Home

About 8 years ago.......

This post is part of a series explaining how we moved to improve my deaf son's services.

We bought a cute house and prepared to move. It was really hard to leave our friends and Deaf community in Los Angeles but this move would improve our quality of life and allow me to spend more time advocating for my son son who was four at the time.

They days leading up to the move were frantic. We had many friends to say farewell to and lots of stuff to purge for the move. We got the bright idea to adopt a large rescue dog on impulse. After all we were moving to a house with a fenced yard of course we needed a dog. We shoved him into the back seat of the car and just as we pulled out of the parking lot he showed his detest for travel by promptly puking all over my son. At home we discovered he would not poop if he was on a leash. We had nowhere for him to roam free and I found myself doing something out of character, begging a dog to poop.

One thing that was a priority was an iron clad IEP. We needed his services to be so specific the new school would have to honor them. I sat with his teachers and went though the pain staking task of wording direct instruction in ASL and ASL instruction. We wanted to be clear he needed English for reading and writing but spoken English was reserved for pull out speech. This document was the holy grail that would insure my son would get what he needs.

We were so nervous about the move but very excited. Since I was pregnant I flew up to Washington with my son and my husband and several friends drove up in a caravan with all of our worldly possessions. The IFSP flew up with me to insure it didn't get lost.

My in laws met me at the airport and we stayed in a hotel one night waiting for the everyone to arrive the next day. On schedule my son and I were dropped off at our new house the next day to wait for the moving caravan. Of course my husband would be delayed by one day because the dog didn't like to travel and he was expressing this at every mile post.

So my son and I discovered the frustrating solitude of being stuck in an empty house with nothing to do. My husband's brother brought us blankets and some food. I told my son we were camping and it was an adventure. He was excited. The excitement wore off as the hours ticked by. That night it was hard to get him to sleep. Unlike a hearing child I could not turn off the lights and sing to him or tell him a story that might make his eyes heavy. No, we were up most of the night but at least we had found home.

1 comment:

  1. A technique I observed in a daycare center getting both deaf and hearing kids to sleep: petting their heads. Staff people would sit beside the cots of kids who couldn't sleep and slowly stroke their hair till they became sleepy.