I walked over to the school today in the most bitterly cold wind. So by the time I reached Ellee’s CSE (Committee for Special Education, I believe) meeting, I needed a little time to refocus, while mostly trying to catch my breath and feel warmth in my fingers again.
I will say, it’s always a bit intimidating, entering a room full of people there to evaluate your child’s progress.
Thankfully, I’ve learned to see it more as a group of people who are all there to help our daughter be as successful as possible. Every individual plays a role in supporting her and they all work together in her best interest. It really is actually quite a blessing.
As our meeting started, I did my best to open my mind and heart to everything that was said. The best part was hearing each teacher share Ellee’s strengths.
She was described as a kind and helpful girl who always actively worked hard each day to get her tasks done. As each teacher shared, it was clear that our daughter was cared for and loved. And these words always mean so much. Because in life, being a kind and helpful person is important. And her teachers have always agreed that Ellee has gifts in these areas that will help her to be successful.
There were hard parts to the meeting as well. Usually this is where I break down, because it’s always a struggle to know that our daughter struggles with learning. But for some reason, this meeting felt different. Sure, I heard some of the same things we’ve known for the past few years since her diagnosis. But each struggle was met with a plan for support and instead of feeling sad this year, I felt very hopeful.
Leaving the meeting, I knew in my heart that Ellee would continue to be just fine. I knew she was in great hands and that with support she would continue to progress and thrive in her own time and on her own pace.
I remember when Ellee was diagnosed how a dear friend who had been a teacher had shared something that has stuck with me over the years. She told me that most learners go from Point A to Point B in a straight line. But that when a child has a learning disability that they also get from Point A to Point B. But often times, the line can curve or squiggle on a different path and even though it might not look the same, it still accomplishes the same goal.
I was so very thankful for this advice, because it helped me to see that our Ellee is on her own path. In terms of education, she might not always be where everyone else is, but she will get there and she will be successful.
And I do know that we will be there to help her every step of the way.
In a way, this post was written to acknowledge life and one of the unique educational aspects that we have with our sweet daughter. It was also in a way written to encourage any other parents who might have a child that struggles. Know that you’re not alone. Know that it gets easier at times and at others it will be hard again. But know that we can keep moving forward with our children, loving them and supporting them on their own paths through life. For me, it’s constantly trusting that God has given us our amazing daughter and that her struggles are there for a reason. It’s walking in faith, knowing that those same struggles can turn into strengths if we don’t give up.
Also, I suppose this post was to document Ellee’s recent owl diorama. There was a bit of drama since somehow we missed the boat with this project and had to get it done in only two days. Thankfully, I love a good craft project and it turned out well and we celebrated greatly with Ellee when she got a 4 (out of 4).