Oz Whiston writing as Oz Drummond (birdhousefrog) wrote,
Oz Whiston writing as Oz Drummond

Miracles Do Happen (With a Lot of Elbow Grease)

Lots of interesting posts today. Good one on feminism and Anne McCaffrey's Pern series, especially all the comments, over at Kate Elliot's lj. Good one on motherhood and writing over at the home of BitterCon, Sarah's lj. I didn't add to the discussions though. My thoughts are a bit jumbled up on both topics.

Does life interrupt my writing? Yes. In ways I'm not willing to discuss. But I will discuss this. I have one child. She has issues. For the past two years, she has tested with an IQ of 90. This is not a good score. I have cried buckets of tears about it, written pages and pages in journals trying to release my anguish so I could gain some distance and do some real writing. I have given up hours, days, months, years of my time to work on her issues. I drive her to appointments, I work with her, I agonize over medical, educational and psych decisions. Am I doing the right thing? Is giving up my right to a life the right thing to do?

Because you see, I didn't ask for her to be this way. And yes, I have a right to my own life as an adult, to my own career. But I brought her into this world and it is my job, my responsibility, to make her the best human being she can be. It is not a choice to leave her on her own, to leave her to her own devices. That is not, in her case, in my mind, a choice. Some parents might disagree. Let her find her way, let her be less academic, they might say. She will be artistic and musical and wonderful in her own way, bright and shiny and happy. Maybe yes, maybe no.

So, because a child psychologist said that the brain is still plastic at her age and it can change drastically, I invested my time and money in her future. I spend time in her class every week so I can size up the other kids and help her develop her social skills. She can't remember names (neither can I) and she can't tell who will be a good friend. And I take her to her appts and I did floor play for a year to help her learn how to put her thoughts together logically and I fought the public system to get her qualified for help in speech. And so forth. For almost 3 years now. I quit my office job, gave up a six-figure salary, to reduce the family's stress, to spend time with her, to not place her in daycare, to give her the one on one attention no one else will. Because no one will ever care for her as much as her parents do.

Today, that Miracle. She tested at mid-year of first grade below the standard reading level. She was still at primer level. She's a year older than the rest of her class, so this was disheartening, but with the IQ scores, expected. It is no longer a smack in the face to find out she tested poorly. Now they are gearing up for testing at year end and were concerned about her scores. But because she's speech-qualified for special education, she is allowed 'accommodations' in her testing. They plan to test her both with and without these accommodations. First, they tested her with. And my darling tested with a 3rd grade reading level. You cannot imagine how I feel today. She has made great strides, but this is the first standardized indication of what I've always believed her true level was.

I love her and I'm so proud of her. And that's what I wanted to share in my blog today.

Frog Out
Tags: home, miss e

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