Thursday, June 22, 2006

Bye Bye Nursery School

I hate that I haven't been posting. There really is a lot to talk about; a lot of great strides that the boys are making and Jake is up to his same ole tricks by coming up with some beauty one-liners. But there just hasn't been (isn't any) time to write right now. We are 21 days from the big move and the to-do list is a million lines long. Stay patient and I will do my best, especially once we get to Calgary.

This week is the beginning of the end of this chapter for us and it hit home this morning. Today was the boys' last day of Nursery School. I somehow got my dates screwed up and didn't realize it was this week. Saying goodbye to Holly, Diane, Joy and Susan (the teachers) was a lot harder than I thought it would be. I broke into an ugly cry when I said goodbye to them, but I couldn't help it. It's not just the goodbyes that kill me. It's the frustration at not having the words to express how much I appreciate them and thank them for the difference that they have made to Owen and Will. If the boys could speak, I am sure that they would express their feelings of love for these women. They have become a part of the boys' 'family' and without them, I don't think that the boys would be where they are today.

From the first day that I spoke with Diane after learning of the boys' diagnosis and knowing that we needed to find a preschool home for them, Diane was exactly the right person for me to talk to. Her positive attitude, her philosophy on inclusion in the classroom, her obvious passion and love for her line of work was exactly the reassurance I needed to put my mind at ease. When the boys started going to nursery school, I would leave them at the door and run to my van to cry because I was so afraid for them and how they would handle the adjustment at being away from home and surrounded by other kids. I also feared for how the staff would treat the boys; would they resent them for all of the extra work they would require? would they be segregated from the other kids? would they be ignored? These fears were completely unfounded but they were what I felt. After two days, I knew we had chosen wisely. The boys ran from me to go to school. They hugged and clung to the women and they showed pure trust and affection for each one of them.

Soon we could see the changes. When we peeked through the window to watch them at play, we could see that they were slowly but surely melting into the scene amongst the other kids. Sure, they were still acting a little different. But the other kids seemed to accept them. The boys were more attentive, they participated in circle time, they clapped and performed the actions during sing-songs, they lined up with the others to wash their hands, they sat at a table for snack time. The biggest sign for me that the boys were doing well was the fact that I had two hours every morning where I only occasionally thought about how they were doing. I wasn't preoccupied with worry. I knew they were not only okay, but they were happy where they were and they were learning.

Diane, Holly, Joy and Susan are just another example of how the universe has a way of dropping us little gifts every now and then when you need them the most. These women have all been blessings to our family and we are going to miss them dearly.

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