Maybe it’s because this is our last rest stop, our last year in public school, or maybe it’s just because I’m now one of those old folks that is so much wiser but this last leg of our journey has made me very aware of how fortunate we are. Perhaps it’s the reminiscing part that is forever running through my head these days but I have realized the great respect I have for the many people that have helped my daughter and us as a family get to the point we are at now.
Often times along the way we felt that it was us against them. At some points we have had to hire an attorney to be on “our side.” I know what it’s like to be an angry parent. Never would I have thought back then that we would be in such the good place we are today. We may not have always agreed but we were always able to compromise and a great deal of respect was made along the way.
In the beginning as a young parent with a newly diagnosed child it’s hard to comprehend why other people don’t feel the same urgency and need for services that you do. It’s incomprehensible that the world doesn’t feel the same way about your child as you do. We get angry at our school district, we get angry at our team, we get angry at the world. You become panic stricken and want everything done now. Starting out on a journey traveling down an unfamiliar road and not knowing where you are going to end up will make you do and say anything that you think will lead you in the right direction. It’s when you learn to work with the people around you that you keep moving forward.
And now as our journey with our daughter is about to take a new turn I’ve realized that even when the times we were in a really bad place or the wrong program we always found a way to make things right. Sometimes we put our trust in people we hardly knew but it’s some of those people that stayed with us through the years that have earned my deepest respect. Today I realize how fortunate we are to have met so many people on this journey that we have so much respect and gratitude for.