Yesterday, Kathy (a social worker from Wildwood) picked Andy and me up as soon as we put Jonah on the bus and we headed to Rome, NY to tour Tradewinds, a residential facility for disabled children.
I sat in front and babbled like a Chatty Cathy doll the entire trip there - partly to avoid thinking or talking about what we were doing, partly because I’m just kind of a blabbermouth sometimes.
The facility is very nice – a series of 6 houses with 6 kids in each house; every child has his/her own bedroom. No tubs, though, just like St. Colman’s – only showers. I wonder if that’s a drowning danger thing. You couldn’t drown Jonah if you wanted to; I think he has gills.
At any rate the people were nice and informative and they asked us a million questions about Jonah and then showed us the house and the school building, then explained how they take the kids to the pool on Tuesdays and Thursdays at the Y, and on various outings and trips whenever possible. They don’t, however, have any openings until at least June. We’re touring Springbrook in early March and The Center for Discovery in late March.
When the tour was over I asked to sit in the back of the Kathy’s van. Andy thought I was just being nice because I’d sat in front on the way there, but really I just wanted to sit back there and cry. As a result it was a much quieter trip back; Andy’s not the talker I am, and aside from my blowing my nose as quietly as possible, most of the sounds in the car were in my head:
How can we do this? How can I live this far from my child? Will he be scared and freaked out and panicked when we drop him off that inevitable day and then leave him there like some abandoned dog?
It’s not like he will understand if I say “mama and daddy will be back in a few days, sweetheart. Mama promises.”
Andy and I are going back on Monday to bring Jonah so they can assess him. I have the day off from work and Jonah has the week off from school, so it’s a good day to go. It may be a nightmare getting him to stay calm for the car ride, but we bought one of those bus harnesses for the car so it should at least keep him safe for the trip.
When we returned from Tradewinds and got Jonah off the bus, I grabbed his bag to see what they’d written in his log book: 4 aggressions that day, and he seemed unsettled. I hate the log book. I know it’s necessary and they always include something positive, but I hate it nonetheless. And yet I want to read it right away. I don’t know what I expect them to tell us one day: Amazing news to report! Jonah was perfect all day; he started a whole conversation on a new theory he’s postulating on astrophysics, sat still and solved college-level calculus problems on his own, sang an aria from Mozart’s Marriage of Figaro, prepared a 4-course gourmet meal for lunch, and counted 246 toothpicks when the box fell on the floor; we now think he’s a savant and should be transferred to a school for geniuses.
Okay, so I’m being just a little facetious.
Lately I have been spending more and more time with Jonah, inventing games and running around and just spending time with him.
He loves his slinky (he has several) and those bouncy balls you can buy for a quarter on the way out of the grocery store. And Wednesday evening we played on the bed, jumping and hiding under the covers and singing.
We do so love our little boy.