Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Day/Night #1 at Residential School

I am quietly awaiting the "very first" of daily phone calls to be expected from my daughter’s new school to get an update on how her first night went--that is, sleeping somewhere that is not home--or home to her. I still have not yet heard from them at 11:00 am this morning and am quietly chanting to myself as I read my e-mails, the news and random blogs that I like to occasionally check in on: “ I’m not gonna call, I’m not gonna call…”

As some of you know, Meghan is in a new residential school and one that we had chosen wisely for her and had been on a waiting list for just about a year. If someone is going to send their child to a residential school, then I believe in choosing wisely for the absolute right school. And how does one go about choosing the right school? Through countless research, visits, interviews and a really, really good, old-fashioned gut instinct and sense that this is, in fact, the right school for your child; hence, we had no reservations about the school that we chose for Meghan, located in Southborough, MA.

We took her to attend her very first class yesterday morning and she went along happily and excitedly--as she had done once before during a separate visit.

We, however, were taken to another (conference) room and held hostage to--yet again--two or three more pieces of paperwork to sign, sign, and sign away; more interviews with the nurse to ABSOLUTELY make sure that her health record had not changed in a whole week worth of time; sat down with-- yet another--person from “fund raising” to see how and what “we” could do to help raise money (donate)—as parents who “will of course” participate in their child’s school programs. Then the morning was "topped off" with a special luncheon with her teachers and residential support staff (other teachers) as if one could really eat at a time like this. Then we visited Meghan in her class—a solitary room (that is without other students and with all three of her teachers) in which NOT to say goodbye to Meghan, but instead “we will see you soon, honey—we love you!” and pray like hell that she doesn’t try to run after us or grab a pant leg and scream her bloody head off…And with barely any control over my own emotions, I would have just started balling my eyes out. I think then all bets would have to be off!

Oh Geez!!

But NO, that dreadful imaginary scene did not, in fact, happen; as truth should be told, Meghan continued to have fun and enjoyed not une, nor deux, but trios of her teacher’s playing and attending to her as she sat soaking-in-all-that-lovely attention--hey, who's mom and dad anyway! as we watched through a one way mirror.

Thank God!!

I called at 7:00 that evening to say hi to Meghan and to hear from the teacher about the rest of her day and evening. Mind you, she has never been without her parents in all of her 13 years.

"She's doing great” was the report, in fact, she had just showered, changed and was ready to brush her teeth, and I thought: Ha, brush her teeth and it’s only 7:00 pm, Wow, after 4 hours of residential living and intense behavioral therapy, she’s already a changed girl!! Or scared stiff? Or simply cooperating for “time off for good behavior? (Stop it!!)

Who knows, but time will tell. And we will take one day at a time... We will visit her on Saturday with her brother, Nick, who will get a chance to see the house for the first time, and her new room at school, and we will all get to meet her roommates… and I will not call but instead (patiently) wait for the teacher's daily phone call for an update.

“I will not call, I will not call, I will not call, I will not…”

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Got to love the make sure you'll committ to "donate money" part from NECC. As if $225,000 per year isn't enough. It never is for that place. Oh, and sign all your child's medical rights away to us. Scary, scary, scary.