I hate your kids

...and other things autism parents won’t say out loud.

07 / 25

Saying goodbye to Benjamin’s school

Benjamin’s school is throwing a big farewell celebration for him on Wednesday, the day before we move.

It’s the real deal. They made up this beautiful invitation, with an entire paragraph about how much I, ahem, as half-assed Parent Association President, have done for the place, and they sent it around to all 20 or so families. There will be speeches, and if the rumors are true, a slideshow.

I’m touched. Really, I am. The thing is, I’m also totally dreading it. Not because it won’t be absolutely lovely—based on past parties and ceremonies I’ve attended it surely will be. It’s just that I don’t want to cry. 

Listen, I know there’s nothing wrong with crying in this kind of situation. I’d have to be some kind of crazy inhuman ice queen to keep it together at the parts where they talk about how much progress Benjamin has made in his four years there and how everyone thinks he’s so awesome. But judging from the last couple of weeks, during which I have been prone to primal, death-in-the-family, Terms of Endearment-type hysterics when I so much as drive in the general direction of said school, it’s not going to be the kind of crying that should happen in public. I mean, seriously—how can I be expected to sit there for an hour and a half, saying goodbye to the people who have taught my kid how to talk, how to write his name, how to get a haircut, how to learn? It’s going to be total torture.

Well, unfortunately I can’t really get out of it. So here’s my strategy: I’m going to think (and cry) about all of the really depressing stuff now (like how I might never know how Benjamin feels about no longer seeing the only people outside of his immediate family who truly understand and appreciate him, and how wrecked I am about no longer seeing these people who I feel ridiculously grateful and connected to) so that maybe I’ll get it mostly out of my system and therefore won’t look too crazy on Wednesday. I’ll let you know how that goes. 

A few photos to get me started…

As you can see, Benjamin feels quite at home in the classroom.

Practicing hair cutting with Atara, occupational therapist extraordinaire.

His final after-school session with Atara. Okay, so maybe he’s going to love Florida.