I thought we were settling into Preschool nicely. I have really loved his teacher and aides–they are genuinely excited and happy when he has a good day and more importantly, they seem to enjoy having him around. I have felt so blessed in that regard. I even get big smiles and happy greetings from random teachers every morning, so in general, I’ve felt warm and fuzzy about this new phase of Charlie’s education.
And then there’s the transportation issue.
When Charlie started preschool, I was taking him and picking him up. Call me crazy, but I actually liked getting a few minutes every day to chat with the teacher and see how things were going. I’m one of those nutty moms who likes to know what’s going on in her three-year-old’s life.
After the first week, we were told that we could no longer park, go to the class, and pick up our kids. We were told that construction would be starting soon and our kids would be “unsafe.” Made perfect sense and I started making arrangements for Charlie to ride the bus. In the mean-time I was instructed to use the regular carpool line with everyone else.
That’s where the problems started to crop up.
You see, Charlie has an issue with over-heating. Basically, leave him in the heat for too long and he starts to “wilt.” He becomes extremely drowsy, lethargic, and glassy-eyed. Not a great situation, but one that’s pretty easy to keep on top of. I don’t know if it’s related to medication or brain injury, but I’ve found this problem with several other CP kids including one in Charlie’s class.
When I went through the regular carpool line, Charlie was sitting outside for about 45 minutes before I made my way through the line and got him in the car. Not good. The bus should be our other option, but it doesn’t have Air Conditioning. It’s still in the 90s here and an un-air conditioned bus in the afternoon heat is a no-go. I’m also not entirely clear on how long the kids wait around before boarding the bus and rolling out.
So we’re either roasting on the sidewalk or roasting on the bus–not to mention I’m not exactly thrilled about being forced to put my three-year-old on a bus. I do like to see Charlie’s teachers and get a little daily update since he can’t tell me what happened that day.
The teachers quickly figured out a solution–we could park at the handicap spots in the back parking lot and pick up our children. The spots are nowhere near the construction vehicles/materials, and this way our children wait a brief amount of time. We had this plan approved by the Vice Principal and they even made a little sign so the crossing guard will let us in the back.
It’s a beautiful system.
You can imagine my surprise when the crossing guard told me on Thursday that we wouldn’t be allowed in the back any more. Apparently the principal saw us and wasn’t happy. She wants us to use the handicap spots in the front–not the back. You know, the one that’s completely blocked by the carpool line.
I want to be agreeable. I want to be nice. I want people to just use common sense. Charlie has a medical plan that clearly states he’s not supposed to be out in the heat. Why is that so hard to follow? I’m not asking for special treatment so I don’t have to wait in the carpool line. I’m asking for special treatment because my child needs it. I mean, what’s the point of that fancy-dancy medical plan if they can just ignore it?
Tuesday we’ll see what happens. If Charlie sits out in the heat again, there will be meeting (the second since I’ve already met with the principal about transportation). Still trying to figure out what kind of meeting. Sugar and honey? or guns blazing? My Dad suggested calling in the posse of lawyers I call a family and having them come with me to the meeting. I’m pretty sure he was kidding. My husband suggested just calling the principal and asking who her supervisor is. Gah. I hate this stuff. I hate that you have to fight for the right thing when it should be SO obvious. I hate that I have to sit through long talks about shunt failure when my kid looks up at the ceiling a lot, but people think it’s fine to leave him roasting in the sun.I hate that you have to force people to follow the law. I especially hate that.
And he’s three. I mean, how many three-year-olds are riding buses? Going to school for seven hours a day? That’s a lot and besides just following the law, wouldn’t a little compassion be nice? I know, too much to ask for. I need to stop asking and start demanding. I just wish this stuff were easier.