Friday was the day we went to Charlie’s school to officially enroll him. It’s a little silly considering the eleventy billion hoops we’ve already jumped through, but who am I to argue with bureaucracy?
The times for registration were 9-12. I wanted to arrive bright and early, so it’s no surprise that I actually got there around 10:15. At some point, I got the inspired idea that Charlie should go in his wheelchair. He prefer it to the stroller, he looks more his age, and from my perspective, I thought it was important for the people at school to see Charlie as he is and not as a sleepy baby.
This all sounded really good in my head, but the reality was a little less spectacular. I have to put the chair together when we arrive somewhere and normally this is no problem. On this day, however, I had first day jitters and you know, people were around, glancing over, and that made me even more nervous, so I guess I got performance anxiety. I could not get the seat onto the frame. I’m pulling and yanking and stretching and shaking and it just would. not. work. Had to lay it on it’s side and actually step on it a little to get it adjusted correctly. I’m doing all this in the parking lot in front of God and Country with a heat index of about 104. Luckily, I chose an adorable shade of yellow for Charlie’s chair that makes it practically invisible so I’m sure no one saw me.
By the time I get the chair assembled and Charlie situated, I look like I jogged over to the registration. Great condition to meet new people, right? Because of some universal policy that I’m not privy to, but that clearly exists, my sweat-soaked self lined up directly behind an impossibly thin and tan woman who looked like she’d just stepped out of a vegetable crisper. She didn’t even have a kid with her which seemed like a real injustice as I tried to entertain a hot and bored preschooler in the un-air conditioned gym.
We waited in three lines, met the principal, declined free and reduced lunch twice, and I had to run back to the car for a forgotten paper once. When we got to the point where we actually got to sit down and officially enroll, Charlie began wailing loudly as big crocodile tears ran down his face. After checking a few times and realizing that it wasn’t working, he quit.
So. . . not my best day, but overall it was pretty painless experience. People were polite and spoke directly to Charlie. He, of course, ignored them, but one step at a time, right?