Yesterday I took Boo on a field trip with her class. We went to a local farm and visited their pumpkin patch and apple orchard. There is a reason why I have never volunteered for one of Allie’s field trips. Yesterday’s torture solidified my stance.
Boo’s field trip was utter chaos. First of all, there were about 25 3-5 year-olds. Some (sane) parents just dropped their children off and ran as fast as the could to the nearest Dunkin Donuts. These children are all running around like the crazy preschoolers they are supposed to be. Except Boo, who cannot run and was overwhelmed by all the nature and noise of 24 children running around like crazy preschoolers.
I started getting stressed immediately. As we all started walking towards the pumpkin patch Boo was crying ‘all done’ and ‘no like’, wanting me to pick her up. I was making her walk because 1) I believe if I am being tortured she should be too 2) I was trying to give the impression that I was paying attention to all the ABA therapies they have been doing at school.
At this point (only 10 minutes into the field trip) I am so thankful for sunglasses that hide the tears I am trying to hold back. Because it is slaps me in the face again that she is NOT like the other kids. In this class half the kids are supposed to be ‘special’. And they are, there is one with Down Syndrome, a host of varing degrees of children on the autistism spectrum, and whatever else. But none have her degree of delay. At least to my overwhelmed eyes. As the children ran to the pumpkins it took so much time for Boo to walk that far and then to finally get her to realize that the pumpkins were not “broken”. She was just starting to walk around the patch when she trips over a vine. OH NO her hands are dirty!!!!
I swear by the time we got thru the patch and finished with the apple orchard my hair was straight. And had a couple more grey hairs.
It wasn’t all bad. We did have some funny moments. Like when Boo thought she heard a bus and started to scream for Allie to “ome here”. I finally gave up trying to explain that Allie wasn’t here. I distracted her with a shiny apple.
But the trip was heartbreaking for me. When they all posed for a class picture and Boo was just standing there. Not looking at the camera, not realizing she was supposed to be standing up, just not realizing period. And then when they all sat on the grass for story time. Sidebar–who makes kids with sensory issues sit on wet grass? Boo had her back to the class the entire time. As the kids acted out 5 Little Pumpkins Boo just sat there.
One mom asked me how Boo was in this class. After all don’t you have to be almost 4-5 years old? She thought Boo was only 2. I briefly say that Boo is almost 4 but has a global delay.
I want to kick my own ass, quite frankly. Because I should be over it by now. It shouldn’t bother me when I see kids that are “typical” or non-typical but without the severity of delay that Boo has. I know there are children (and parents) who have it so much worse. I should be so utterly grateful that she is alive, healthy and growing.
But I am not. I am fine in our own little bubble. It is when we venture out that it slaps me again and again that she is not “typical”.
Exactly when does the hurt stop?
|You cannot see the tears, but she was so upset
and so was Mom