I imagine most parents of special needs kids go through brief periods of relative bliss. Like life is “normal”. Like your kid is “normal”. Whatever your normal is. Like things are humming along just fine. And then, due to this gift of distraction from reality, you lose your edge, take your eyes off the road in front of you, brake too late, and slam into the back of a semi truck. That’s pretty much how I would describe our IEP meeting at Zeke’s school yesterday. I walked in thinking we had this school thing all figured out and I walked out feeling like I had no clue and perhaps I need to be back in kindergarten too.
Sometimes I conjure up long lectures for my kids while I’m getting ready for the day. It’s not that I’m thinking they’d actually sit through said lecture, but rather, there are so many things I want to convey and our normal time of discussion on the way to co-op or piano lessons or wherever doesn’t seem to suffice. And even if they did sit through my discourse, they’d tune me out around the five minute mark. I do have a teenager and tweenager, after all. So, I’ll write it all down instead. And hope that someday they’ll read it. Maybe it will be a thousand some days from now, but this is a topic that will relevant until the end of some days, because this is on friendship.
I don’t write about politics. It’s not that I don’t like politics or discussing political process or speculating about election results. I do and I have for quite some time. My undergraduate major was in International Studies with a minor in Political Science. I often enjoyed a good debate in class or a one sided diatribe through a term paper, expressing my views in open dialogue with peers and professors alike. This was back in the day when you could count on others for solid, intellectual conversations, free from emotional arguments and illogical conclusions. In fact, that was the rule and if you were one to go down the road of tugging on heartstrings or building Utopian fantasies, as I was prone to do given my personality and love of the underdog, you were chastised back into the game. But I digress. There are very intelligent people who write about politics and I’ll leave it to them. This is is not about politics at all. It’s about life.
I listened to two podcasts today that left me hollow. Somewhat horrified in fact. Not solely from the content itself but from their implications. But then I thought, “but for the grace of God go I,” and a deep sadness took hold instead.
There are few places we tend to feel at home in this world. Aside from the obvious of our actual homes, of course. For some people it’s Wisconsin or California. For others, France or Thailand. For me, it’s Italy. I knew it the first time I visited 16 years ago and I’ve known it twice since then. It fits. We returned almost a week ago and I long to be back again. Someday. I hope. And if not on this current earth, I do believe I’ll have eternity to see that land in its perfected state.