In a perfect world, being a mother and fighting for your children wouldn’t be as hard as it has been for me. With my son’s diagnosis of Tourette syndrome, playing a huge role in his everyday life, not getting the resources and help from our school board is both frustrating and emotionally draining. Not to mention the wait lists and waiting times to see specialists and get services like on-going counselling and psychiatry. Even though at the school level, my son has one of the best Principal’s in this Board (personal opinion and having known her for the last 10 years) who has been fighting her hardest for him, we are still hitting walls. A board that prides itself on having the proper programs and resources in place for dealing with all mental health issues but has so many gaps that children, like my son, are finding the school system difficult to navigate.
He doesn’t belong in a classroom of serious behavioural issues and he doesn’t belong in a classroom full of children who are absolutely terrified and anxious about going to school they have trouble coping and functioning. So where does that leave us? It leaves us in a gap that has no quick answers, no quick fixes and even still leaves my son is such a crappy spot that I feel like they only way he will be okay for the next few years is if I homeschool him myself.
He is isolating himself and doesn’t have any friends and has trouble keeping them once he does get one because they don’t understand him or what he is going through. He was recently in a program within the board and he did amazingly well. Unfortunately, this particular program has a maximum time frame to it and then they send them back to their home school with ideas of how to make it better for them but with no real other resources to put the plan into action.
I want the school to see this little boy for who he truly is. He’s there under all the other crap he is going through. He is not just another child with a diagnosis. He isn’t just Tourette Syndrome. He is so much more and can be so much more if they can only figure out how to fill the gaps in their system so that he and others like him, don’t fall through the cracks.
So this is where we are right now. Stuck. Lost and confused as to how to best help my son. He is such a brilliant little boy who is fighting with his own body and it not doing what he wants it to do. He told the teachers in the program that he wishes he never had this, that he didn’t have to feel this way. I cry when I hear him so upset that he cries because he doesn’t like who this disease has made him become. All I want is for our school board to help him, our health care system to help him, for the gaps to close for him. I want what is best for him but if they can’t find a way to help him, then I will do what any mother would and help him myself.
What would you do if you were in my shoes?