[Insert A Title Of Your Choice Here]

The stomach bug got us all. Baby Girl got it twice and the rest of us got it once (pleeeease no seconds). Since Baby Girl seemed better the day after the throwing up ended, she went back to school on Thursday, only to wake up that night throwing up again. So I’m sure half of her class will get wiped out, too. I’m going to stick a couple cans of Lysol in her backpack as a weak-ass apology.

It was funny how it affected all of us differently. Baby Girl obviously had it the worst with all of the throwing up, plus she complained of a headache, and she’s still feeling worn out today. I only had it bad for several hours, but then I had muscle spasms that lasted a day later and still feel like I had my ass kicked. My husband was sick for a couple of hours and slept all day but is still worn out today. LM was also sick for only a couple of hours and slept all day but is going full blast today. The rest of us aren’t at 100 percent just yet, so if looks could kill, he’d be a dead man by now.

Since BG was feeling better on Thursday, we went to her parent teacher conference that night. Her teacher and assistant teacher had lots of good things to say about how she was doing. Her test scores were great (yep, they have to do standardized testing in kindergarten) and at the top of the class. Her teacher said she can read pretty much any word she puts in front of her and is on a second grade reading level so far and is great with math, too. Her teacher also said she seems like she’s in her own little world a lot when they aren’t doing the more structured activities and doesn’t see her initiate playing with other kids but when they approach her she plays (and takes charge) and gets on well with everyone.

The teacher vented about Asshole Psychologist a little, too, and told me that they had the FM system for BG within two hours of that meeting. She said as a mom of a kid who will need services in a couple of years that it scared her and that she was in our corner and would do whatever she could to help. ❤ (And eventually I’ll stop gloating/complaining over Asshole Psychologist, but probably not anytime soon since a) it pissed me off so badly and b) we aren’t done.)

We aren’t quite caught up on laundry yet, but are getting there. Hopefully everyone will be back to normal tomorrow! My husband has Monday and Tuesday off work, so it’ll be nice to play catch up and relax a little. The kids have been on a Teen Titans Go! kick, and now we’re watching Teen Titans Go! To The Movies, and it’s fucking hilarious. It’s definitely my favorite kids show they’ve picked up lately.

Oh, and remember how I hadn’t had a sugary drink (Coke, sweet tea) since April? Well, I shot that all to hell with my virus. After hours of being sick, I found a bottle of Pepsi in the fridge and drank it. I never cared that much for Pepsi, but it was heavenly. It didn’t stay down long, but now I’ve gotta start over.

How is your weekend going?

That’s Sick, Yo

It’s the most wonderful time of the year. (Don’t hate me for starting Christmas music already.) It’s also the sickest, and not in the good sense that the word “sick” is being used in these days.

The night before, the girl woke me up around 3AM. Not by kissing my cheek, shoving her knees in my back, or rubbing her feet on my pajamas (something she loves to do, which is so darn odd), but by puking on my back. That poor girl threw up for the following nine hours. We were worried that her reflux was flaring up again, but the vomiting shifted to diarrhea and then back to vomit later in the evening, so we felt like it was safe to assume that she had a stomach bug.

I truly learned what Clothes Mountain is when we went through most of our towels and linens. We had a trash can and vomit bag, but somehow vomit still got everywhere.

She woke up at 4:00 last night and refused to try to go back to sleep. Super cranky. We kept her home today and hopefully she’ll feel all better by tomorrow. Tomorrow will mark her tenth absence this year, so she’s missed 20 percent of the school days at this point. Plus she gets the half day for therapy every week. Ten days is the most they’re supposed to miss, so hopefully we won’t run into any issues if she misses more.

While my husband and LM were out last night, she wanted to lie down on my bed because she was tired. I laid down with her, and she didn’t go to sleep but became Chatty Cathy instead. That is one interesting child. She started talking about Teen Titans and how she noticed that each of the characters has a different way of talking. She told me facts about lions and the planets. (She seemed disappointed when I didn’t know which planets are gas giants.)

And then she abruptly shifted gears and told me she had to start liking Barbie dolls. I asked why and she said it’s what girls are supposed to like and if she likes them too, maybe people will stop staring at her all the time.

“Who’s staring at you?” I asked.

“Everybody. Everywhere I go, people stare at me. I hate it when people look at me. They all think I’m different,” she said and scowled.

I told her that I doubted anyone was staring at her because she didn’t like Barbies and it’s probably because she’s so cute.

“I know I’m cute,” she agreed. “But I have short hair like a boy and wear boy clothes and that’s why people stare at me.” (For the record, while her hair is shorter, it looks nothing like a boyish haircut, and she probably only wears her shirts from the boy’s section half of the time.)

I talked to her for a while about how everyone is different and can like whatever they want to like, as I’ve done in the past. I told BG that I’d be happy to get her a couple of Barbies for Christmas, but that she should want them because she actually wants to play with them, not because of other people.

She shifted gears again. “Sometimes the girls at school cry,” she said. I asked why, and she told me it’s when they fall down or have an accident.

“Do you ever cry?” I asked.

“Only once. On Halloween, in PE, we were playing Duck, Duck, Goose. I cried then.”

“What happened during Duck, Duck, Goose?”

“It was loud. It’s always loud in there. I had to sit in the middle and didn’t know why. Everyone was looking at me, and I started crying.”

“Poor girl. What did the teacher say?”

“She fussed and said stop, so I stopped, but I wanted to cry more. My friend Zoey patted me on the back and tried to make me feel better.” Zoey is the child who told my husband on the field trip that it was her job to protect Baby Girl.

I told BG that I was sorry that happened and that I would talk to her PE teacher about it. I’ll get a pair of noise canceling headphones for her to use in there when it gets too loud for her and let the teacher know to give BG a sensory break when she gets overwhelmed. She retired a few years ago and decided to work again part-time, so hopefully she isn’t one of those teachers who is difficult over this sort of thing. It really bothers me that she couldn’t take a few seconds to ask why she was crying.

I asked BG if any other enrichment classes were too loud for her, and she said music is, so I’ll get some headphones for that class, too. I could just ask her teacher to send around the pair she already has, but I imagine they’d get lost eventually.

“I hate when things are loud. It hurts and makes me sad and mad!” She sounded upset, so I asked BG if she wanted a hug. She hadn’t wanted to be held or cuddled all day. “No. Why do people want to hug all the time?”

“It’s a display of affection, to show someone they care about them.”

“My friends hug me a lot.” I asked if she was okay with that, and she said sometimes it makes her skin feel itchy. I told her she could ask them to give her a high five instead. I decided to take the opportunity to delve into her brain and ask about some of her other autistic traits, like why she doesn’t make eye contact sometimes. This is because it hurts her eyes and makes her feel sad. Rubbing soft things makes her feel happy, but she said she doesn’t do it at school because people will stare. She has a lot of meltdowns because she’s always cranky — everything is too loud. I knew sensory overload was the cause of that. I’m going to look into some less bulky noise canceling headphones for her to wear more frequently.

I hate the kiddo is sick, but I’m glad it gave us the opportunity to lay down and talk like that. I doubt she would’ve been still long enough to talk for so long about things like that otherwise. Hopefully she’ll bounce back today and be back to her normal wound up self.

And Now There’s Two

We met with the psychologist on Friday to discuss the results of LM’s evaluation. He said that he thinks the boy is also on the spectrum, but very high functioning. The doctor said it was tricky with LM because it was hard to tell how much of his social difficulties are tied to how smart he is, but he thinks the pieces fit. He spent a lot more time with LM than the person who evaluated him when he was seven, and his testing covered more, so it was good that he had so much to pull from.

Despite the reason we tested LM — his sister’s diagnosis combined with him telling me about how he feels like he fakes it socially and stuff — I really didn’t expect that diagnosis after filling out the parent surveys. I didn’t think the surveys had as many 2s and 3s or Almost Always or Always marks (for the symptoms) as Baby Girl’s. I figured the doctor would come back with “ADHD, but has autistic-like traits” like the one who evaluated him before. (And possibly Tourette’s because of his tics.)

It was interesting to see one of the tests that shows how at-risk LM is for certain autism traits, because he had our feedback, LM’s fifth grade teacher’s feedback, and LM’s self-test. Part of the teacher’s test fell into the at-risk category, ours was a bit above hers, and LM’s was all in the probable category.

(Baby Girls’ assessment was mostly in the section where the green line is.)

I thought it was interesting how much the traits we all picked up on were lined up, just different in the severity. I was surprised with LM’s self-assessment, because while I knew that he had some difficulties, I wasn’t aware that he felt like things were so difficult to the point that most of his whole self-test fell into the probable category.

I know the psychologist had a lot of info to pull from, but I wonder if LM’s report hadn’t been so high if he would have been diagnosed with ASD, or if he would’ve also come to the “ADHD with autistic-like traits” conclusion. I don’t suppose it matters, since it doesn’t really change anything on our end. We told LM after he got home, and he said he was relieved to know “why I am the way that I am.” So, while the label ADHD vs. ASD may not matter too much from a parenting perspective at his age (we’ve been working on social skills and coping with sensory stuff for years and would continue to do so regardless), it apparently means a lot to him as far as his self-identity goes.

Now for the concerning part — the doctor said that LM’s self-report shows depression and anxiety. Additionally, the parent report and the teacher report picked up on that (although to a milder degree). That was very upsetting to learn. The doctor said that between LM going through puberty and people on the spectrum being prone to those issues (plus people with ADHD are, too), that it’s not that surprising. And, of course, there’s the biological factor.

Still, I had no idea that LM felt like that. Between not being aware of his social difficulties (fifth grade went well for him and the bullying stopped, so he seemed to improve so much there, just not internally I guess) and depressive traits, I must not be in tune with him nearly as much as I thought I was. Anxiety wasn’t that surprising, but the severity that LM reported was. I asked LM about depression, and he said that he feels down and sad and worried a lot. I know that things can look fine on the outside and the inside be a different story, but things have been going so well for him that depression wasn’t a blip on my radar.

At least we know.

The doctor is going to try to find a therapist that he thinks will work well with LM. He said he wishes his workload were lighter now, otherwise he would love to work with LM himself. He said if he couldn’t find anyone, he would figure out how to make it work, though. So that’s good. We have an appointment with the provider who manages LM’s ADHD meds this week, so we’ll run this by her. The psychologist said we may want to ask about an antidepressant, but he would recommend trying therapy for three months and go from there. I agree, because I don’t want to put LM on an antidepressant if it’s not absolutely necessary. I know from experience that the side effects can be rough, but if that’s what he needs in a few months, then that’s what we’ll do. Since it seemed to make LM feel better to know about his diagnosis, maybe that’ll help with depression, too.

Kids shouldn’t have to deal with fucking depression and anxiety. Well, no one should, but especially not kids.

Funny Bits With The Girl

The girl is often full of herself, and she’s had quite a few funny moments over the past week. Here are a few of them:

Baby Girl told me about playing with another little girl at recess. Baby Girl is 41 inches tall and this little girl, who is just a year older, is almost five feet tall. I was shocked to learn she is six! Anyway, they play family together. I asked BG about their roles, since I know she hates getting stuck as the baby, which is what usually happens.

“My friend is the mommy, and I am the pet lion,” she told me.

I love everything about that.


I was getting something out of LM’s closet and was kneeling over when his old infant car seat fell out of the top and hit me base-first on the head. I yelled and Baby Girl asked what was wrong. I told her, and her response was less than sympathetic.

“You’ll be fine.”

She sounds like a seasoned mom.


BG and LM probably fight more than they get along, but they do have their super sweet moments. LM was helping her put together a LEGO set her grandma gave her and told BG how much he loved her. Baby Girl said she loved him, too.

“I love you more than nothing.”

She has a way with words, huh?


When I called for BG to come into the living room and get ready, she didn’t answer and let her magnadoodle answer for her:

I love that she put an exclamation.

Happy Tuesday!

To The Mountains We Went

I’m one of those people who likes to make plans but doesn’t like to follow through with them. When the time comes to go wherever, I just want to stay home. But, after some back and forth over whether we’d keep our plans to go to the mountains for the weekend, we went, and we had a pretty good time overall.

The trip started out rough due to a meltdown BG had in the car when we picked her up from school. After she screamed for a while, I finally got to the bottom of why she was upset. Her teacher wasn’t at school that day, so things were awful. Nothing in specific, just because the teacher wasn’t there. Thankfully it didn’t last long. After we picked up the boy, we headed out.

Due to some awful traffic, the drive took closer to five hours instead of 3.5, so we got there at 9:00. It’s not like we planned to do anything if we had gotten there earlier, though, other than maybe get some ice cream. That extra hour and a half did mean we got to listen to BG ask “How much longer?” and “Are we almost there?” an extra hundred times. I eventually put my earbuds in for a little quiet.

Rain from the tropical storm moved in early on Saturday, so that killed our outdoor plans. My mother-in-law suggested driving over to Gatlinburg or Pigeon Forge and said it would only be a half an hour drive. We trusted her, and two hours later, we arrived. The kids were none too thrilled about a 4-hour round trip drive after the drive the night before. It turned out that my MIL just wanted to go over there, so she fudged the time a little. Sigh, next time we’ll check. We did see a lot of elk on the ride, which was really cool. At one point, we saw a bunch sitting on the ground and BG shouted, “It’s an elk garden!” That is officially my favorite way to refer to a group of anything from now on.

The kids had fun at a trampoline park in Pigeon Forge, and then we got dinner and made the drive back. On Sunday, we had breakfast, did a little shopping, and drove part of the way back on the Blue Ridge Parkway so we could see the fall foliage. That added time made the trip back about six hours total, and I’m pretty sure that no one would complain if we didn’t see the inside of our car for a week. Again, it was worth the added time.

We are usually hesitant to make weekend trips with Baby Girl. She has never done well on vacation for the first couple of days. It has always been Meltdown City. After joining an autism page on Facebook, I saw other people talk about how their kids took a couple of days to adjust to the new environment, and that made sense. She did well for the most part, though, and I think that is due to the “camper” we stayed in, as she called it. I thought we were going to stay in a hotel room, but it turned out that my MIL booked a one-room trailer in a “trailer resort.” Apparently there are lots of resorts in the mountains, and they absolutely are not what you’d expect when you hear the word resort. 😀

The mobile home was neat as a pin, though. BG was thrilled with it when she stepped in because it looked like MIL’s trailer, aside from it only having one bedroom. The main bedroom, the kitchen, the living room, the TV set, the couch, and the kitchen table were all in the same place as MIL’s, so it was a familiar layout. She commented many times over how it looked just like MIL’s house and actually wanted to stay there instead of going anywhere.

The place wasn’t as cramped as I expected it to be, but there was still only one bed. My husband and I tried to sleep on the pullout couch, but got two hours of sleep each. It was miserably uncomfortable, tilted so that you slid down, and the metal bars were in our back. LM couldn’t sleep on the blow-up mattress, either, so the three of us were dragging big time on Saturday. On Sunday, I slept on the couch without pulling it out, my husband slept on couch cushions, and we put extra blankets on LM’s mattress for extra padding, and we all slept a little better. We couldn’t have been happier to be home in our beds last night.

So, I told you that BG did well the two days we were there, but let me tell you about the ride home. We went to a store to buy some souvenirs, and then I wanted to walk over to a fudge shop to see if they had any caramel fudge. It would’ve taken all of five minutes. BG decided she didn’t want to do this and had an absolute fit, kicking and screaming.

I got pissed off and decided I didn’t want fudge anymore, so we left, and my husband took BG’s new toy from her for acting that way. For the next hour and a half, she screamed in the car. She threw her shoes at us and kicked the back of my seat repeatedly. It was miserable, and she didn’t let up on the screaming for the whole 90 minutes. We stopped a few times at overlooks to take pictures and couldn’t get some as a family for a while because of the meltdown. She eventually stopped, and when she did, it was a 180 as usual — she went from screaming to talking in her super sweet voice about the leaves and tunnels. (When asked what her favorite part of going to the mountains was, she said the tunnels.)

When she perked up, we made a few more stops and got some good pictures. We also stopped and walked over to let the kids see an area called Sliding Rock in Pisgah National Forest, which was lovely. During the summer, people slide down the rock into water that doesn’t get above 55 degrees in the summer. It’s fun but so damn cold. We’re going to try to go back next August and stay a little longer and let the kids do the rock.

We got in around 9:00 last night and are absolutely dead today, despite sleeping okay. Too bad the kids have missed too much school to take a day off! I’m glad we decided to go, because it really was pretty. My husband and I talked about doing a weekend trip for just the two of us. When we would go away for the weekend before the kids came along, we would almost always go to the mountains. I prefer the beach now, but I would like to spend more time browsing around and drive up to Grandfather Mountain and do a little hiking.

How was your weekend?

Back To School

After a week at home following the tonsillectomy, the girl is back at school this morning. I was worried she’d need to be out longer, because even on Saturday, she was cranky, complained of headaches, wasn’t eating or drinking much, and was tired enough to be napping. She did a 180 yesterday, though, and aside from a bit of crankiness, she went through the day just fine. She actually ate more regularly and drink a bunch of water, so I know that helped!

BG had her tonsils removed because of sleep apnea, and her doctor thought that it might help with ADHD symptoms in addition to snoring. I definitely haven’t noticed as much snoring over the past few days. I’m guessing it may take some time to see the ADHD symptoms decrease if we do at all. Oddly enough, we’ve seen more of the odd sensory behaviors (she is rubbing everything and sat in the bathtub running water over her hands for half an hour three times, for example), which we were hoping would decrease.

I was working with her on some makeup work for school when she felt up to it, and lord, it was like pulling teeth to keep her on track. I see why she brings home so much incomplete work. Part of the makeup work was working on handwriting. From what I’ve seen of the other students’ work on display, she has the worst handwriting in the class. She has developmental coordination disorder, so the poor handwriting goes along with it. She also has a summer birthday, which doesn’t help.

I feel bad for BG watching her try to write, because it’s such a struggle for her. A lot of her practice is tracing letters, but she is rarely able to keep her pencil on the dotted line. It blows my mind how I can show her the right way to form a letter and guide her hand over how to make it multiple times, and she does the opposite or something completely different directly after. You wouldn’t think that she had three years of preschool, almost a year of OT, and her mom helping her every day by looking at it, poor kiddo.

The girl’s teacher kept in contact with me over the week, checking in on her. I thought that was really sweet. It means a lot to know you’re leaving your kid in the care of someone that cares about her during the day!

Things are about to get busy again. My husband and Little Man are both doing the Christmas play with our local community theater group, so they’ll be practicing three nights per week. LM wasn’t going to do it at first because his free time is reduced since his school day ends later and he has to go to bed earlier, but the director messaged us and asked and he agreed to do it. He really enjoys acting, so even though it cuts down on his time after school, at least he’ll be having fun.

The girl wanted to sign up for Cub Scouts. She went to the first meeting and decided she hated it for some reason she wouldn’t give us, so that’s out. Her grandmother is relieved, because it gave her a small heart attack that her granddaughter wanted to join something that is supposed to be for boys (even though that group is co-ed).

I did so much of that during our text exchange over Cub Scouts.

We tried to get BG to try another meeting, but she had a meltdown and was sobbing, so we let it go. It would’ve been nice for her to have the opportunity to socialize outside of school, but whatever. The Cub Scout leader gave my husband a form for a popcorn fundraiser at the very first meeting and said we needed to sell $300 worth of stuff, so my husband wasn’t inclined to fight BG over it too much.

Here’s to a good week. Happy Monday 🙂

So Long Tonsils

I talked to Baby Girl’s teacher about things. She said she admired how we advocated for Norah and told me some things she is doing in the classroom to help. She admitted not knowing a lot about autism, but said she is researching strategies to help. She told me her goal is to minimize situations in the class that may be stressful for BG and reduce sensory overload (or meltdowns).

That was good to hear, of course. She also told me that she got an FM system for the girl . I’ve never seen one, but apparently it’s supposed to reduce background noise and deliver the teacher’s voice to BG. She said some kids were curious about it, so she explained what it was and BG seemed happy with it.

The teacher also talked about how they would handle any issues that came up and said that either she or her assistant would take BG to a quiet area to help her calm down while the other stays with the kids. She asked for suggestions for strategies and other changes she could make in the classroom that might help. I’m so happy to hear all of this, because while getting BG through the school day without a meltdown is important, reducing that frustration so she isn’t completely on the verge of one after school is important, too.

Also, the principal said that while she may not get an IEP and be eligible for certain accommodations through the school district, she’ll have a personal education plan for the school itself. It’s a charter school and receives state funding, but they’re able to make their own rules. (Like allowing her to start late if we had chosen to do so and letting her leave early for her therapy appointments.) The district psychologist has no control over that, so I am assuming that FM system was provided that way since she’s technically supposed to haven an IEP to get one. Take that, asshole.

Good stuff.

The girl had her tonsils out yesterday. That poor child seemed like she was on the verge of panic attacks multiple times over the past few days. She was terrified of having the surgery done. She wasn’t worried about pain — that never came up — but the idea of having them removed scared her.

We expected yesterday to be very difficult, but BG was in a good mood when she got up. She didn’t seem too nervous, even when we got to the hospital. After we checked in, a nurse took her back to a room that had the Disney channel playing. We got her dressed in a gown and then the doctor and the anesthesiologist came in to talk to us. When it was time for them to take her back, she didn’t cry, but I sure did when I watched them wheel her away.

We knew the surgery would be quick, but were surprised when the doctor came out half an hour later. I expected him to say something was wrong and they couldn’t remove the tonsils or something, but he said they got him out and she did great. It took longer for her to wake up from the anesthesia than it did for the tonsils to be removed.

When we went back to the recovery room, BG was crying a little. The nurse gave her some water and we rubbed her back. She then asked:

“Where’s my Barbie dream house?”

Um, what?

“What Barbie dream house?” I asked.

“The one I’m supposed to get after surgery.”

“But you don’t even like Barbies. We don’t have a Barbie dream house, sweetie.”

This made her start crying really hard. “But I want my Barbie dream house!” she wailed. I can only imagine how confused we must have looked to the nurses since our daughter, who can’t stand Barbies and other “girl stuff” was crying over a Barbie dream house that she thought she was going to get for some reason.

My husband asked if he should go get a Barbie dream house for her. I looked it up and they cost almost $200, which is half of what we paid for the surgery. I shot that idea down. She did manage to get him to stop by Target and get another gift for her, though.

The doctor said that BG would need a week, maybe two, to recover. After a half hour nap yesterday, she was bouncing off the walls. Same today. You wouldn’t even know she had surgery. I shouldn’t be too surprised since she’s not one to respond to pain much. Even when she had strep throat, she never complained about it hurting. We took her to the doctor because she had a fever and was lethargic and found out that way. Hopefully she continues feeling well and it isn’t a delayed reaction!

The Psychologist From Hell

Ever since BG was diagnosed as being on the spectrum, I’ve done so much reading. Part of that reading includes joining message boards on Facebook and checking out other parents’ experiences with their kids. I’ve seen so many comments about the hell parents dealt with to get accommodations and services for their kids. I felt relieved since we worked with the school in the past to get a 504 Plan for my son, and even though it took longer than I would’ve liked, it wasn’t an awful experience by any means.

And then today happened.

We requested a meeting to discuss a 504 Plan and speech services. LM had speech services at his teacher’s request when he was in second grade (before his 504 Plan was implemented), and I figured it’d be pretty easy to get them for the girl, too, especially since her speech issues are more severe. (I didn’t even realize LM wasn’t pronouncing his S’s right until the teacher told me.)

We expected to meet with the assistant principal (who also helps coordinate student services), the guidance counselor, BG’s teacher, and the school psychologist.

The school principal, a lady who coordinates speech therapy through the district, the school resource teacher, and the lead psychologist for the school district came as well. The school psychologist, who we absolutely loved with LM, wasn’t there. Things got off to a rough start with the lead psychologist (who we’ll call Asshole) asked why we were meeting. I was thinking, dude, there are like nine people in this room and you have no idea why we’re here?

I told him we were there to discuss accommodations for Norah’s ADHD and autism, plus talk about what speech services the school can provide.

“And where are you even getting this stuff?” Asshole asked condescendingly. “Where are you pulling that diagnosis from?”

My husband reminded him that we sent a copy of the report over weeks ago (and frankly, even if it didn’t make it to his desk, he should’ve come into the meeting with an idea of what’s going on). I brought in some extra copies I printed off and slid one over to him. Asshole made a face as if I placed a turd in front of him.

“I don’t want words on paper,” he snapped. “Where are you getting this stuff?”

“We aren’t just getting it from anywhere,” I said. “Following years of behavioral issues and developmental delays, we took BG to a child psychologist, who did a full work-up. Over the course of about a month’s worth of appointments, he did extensive testing and diagnosed BG with Asperger’s, or high functioning autism, and ADHD. He also noted that she has a language delay, sensory processing disorder, and motor skill coordination disorder. All of that is on the report from the psychologist.”

Asshole glanced at it and said, “Well, she might have a clinical diagnosis, but that doesn’t mean anything in a school setting, so I don’t know where you’re pulling this from.”

The speech lady spoke up and suggested we discuss her speech issues. So we did, and she said that BG likely wouldn’t qualify for speech services right now. They prefer to wait until they’re eight to start for the main sounds BG has trouble with. She did say that she would talk with her teacher on reminding BG how to form those sounds. The resource lady asked a lot of questions about her sensory processing and motor skills issues and said she could definitely work with her on that. She said she’d like to get an FM system for BG, too, and that it could deliver the teacher’s voice directly to Norah through headphones and that way she wouldn’t have to deal with so much background noise.

“She has to have an IEP and be a special ed student to go to the resource room,” Asshole interjected. “And I don’t know if we’re going to even evaluate her for an IEP. Maybe we’ll consider a 504 Plan.”

“We didn’t ask for an IEP meeting,” my husband answered. “We wanted her to get a 504 Plan to discuss classroom accommodations and speech.” I added that her teacher was already making the accommodations we wanted, but that it needed to be put in writing to follow her to other classes/grades. The lady over speech services said that she’d have to get an IEP to get formal speech therapy services, and we asked why LM got them without a 504 plan, and she said the speech services LM received were separate from that.

The resource lady asked if BG’s hearing had been tested and said some of the students she’s had before had speech issues because of hearing loss. I told her she was diagnosed with a mild higher frequency loss, but that her audiologist wanted to have her retested after she gets her tonsils out. She asked if there was a history of loss in the family, and I told her about my hearing loss.

I shit you not — Asshole chuckled. “WHAAAAAT?” he said in a loud, slow mocking voice. I’ve heard that mocking voice — the one indicated deaf/hard of hearing people are stupid — far too many times. If looks could kill. No one said anything for a bit until the assistant principal asked BG’s teacher how she did during the fire alarm yesterday, shifting gears back to the sensory processing stuff.

“Fine, no problems,” she said.

“Well, how’d she seem when you picked her up?” Asshole asked me.

“She was fine when I picked her up,” I said.

“I don’t see how there’s a problem with all of this then,” Asshole said.

“Oh wait!” BG’s teacher said. “I’m sorry, but I was wrong. She wasn’t there for the drill. She had already left for her therapy appointments when we did the drill. But I’ll make sure to give her a head’s up so she can put on her headphones next time.”

Asshole shrugged it off. The resource lady asked about meltdowns at home, and we discussed those for a while, with Asshole chiming in saying that these meltdowns are normal for kids in elementary school. Resource lady and the guidance counselor told him that while kids might have tantrums at home after school, that it wasn’t normal for a kid to have multiple meltdowns that get as extreme as hurting others and themselves. More shrugging off. He gave zero fucks.

The meeting lasted an hour. We were so pissed off by the time it was over. Again and again, Asshole made snarky comment after snarky comment. I can’t remember the last time I was around anyone who was so rude and condescending. I could tell he pissed off some of the other people at the table, too, because he was equally dismissive of their concerns or suggestions for helping BG. He also said it’d be easier if she’d just continue with her private therapies. I should’ve asked why he thought a kid with no problems needed private therapies, but I didn’t.

When it was wrapping up, the resource lady asked if she could keep a copy of BG’s evaluation. If she’s anything like the resource lady that I worked with years ago, she’ll probably try to help out BG whether she has an IEP or not. (The resource lady at my old school was an absolute saint and would include the kids whose parents would allow testing since she knew they needed help anyway.) The guidance counselor also asked for a copy.

“You can have this,” Asshole said and tossed it to the other end of the table. “I don’t need it.”

Perfect way to wrap things up.

I don’t get how someone who has never met my child, never heard the first teacher’s report about her, who wouldn’t even look at a psychological evaluation that’s sitting in front of him could just make up his mind and act like that. The lack of professionalism blew my mind.

After we left and discussed how horribly it went with that guy, my husband said he was going to talk to the principal and tell him that under no circumstance should that psychologist have anything to do with evaluating BG. Ultimately, all she needs is a 504 Plan with some accommodations in place, since we can continue taking her to therapies. And I know for a fact that we don’t need Asshole to initiate that. It’d be nice if those therapies were supplemented so she can make progress more quickly, but I’d rather keep things the way they are than have that douche anywhere near her.


On a positive note, I texted BG’s speech therapist yesterday morning about the tonsillectomy and said she’d miss next week. After her appointment yesterday afternoon, she told me she looked at her tonsils and was shocked at how large they are. She said that she’s had some patients in the past who had tonsillectomies that made incredible progress afterwards. She said when the tonsils are so large, it can push the tongue forward and cause speech issues. She said it’s not a guarantee that it’ll help with that too, but to keep our fingers crossed.

It’s amazing how much removing those tonsils could help. It will theoretically make the sleep apnea go away, which means she’ll get a more restful sleep. One of her doctors said that sleep apnea can cause ADHD like symptoms, so maybe those symptoms will improve. I’m sure that being more well rested would reduce her crankiness. And removing them might be able to help with her speech issues. It won’t help much as far as some of the other issues go, but that is still a lot. ❤