Monday, May 10, 2004

I returned my Oldest Son to his school today after his first visit home since being placed at the school at the end of February. I stopped off at Pie Capital of Louisiana on the way home, but, alas, it is closed on Mondays. I went to the gas station and got a moon pie. Not quite what I had in mind, but it did the trick for this redneck.

O.S. loved his long weekend at home, but I think he was ready to go back. We took him to all of his favorite places, bought him 3 or 4 SpongeBob notebooks, and bought him gobs and oodles of french fries and pizza. Yesterday he kept pestering me to go in the car and wasn't satisfied with anyplace I took him. I thought he wanted to go to the park next to the local train depot, but I didn't dare do that solo with Younger Son in tow. So I took him there this morning, but he just wanted to look at the Amtrak Crescent City Limited and go to the potty. I suspect he was trying to tell me yesterday that he wanted to return to his school. Maybe, I really don't know.

DW and I weren't sure what to expect on the ride back. I insisted on taking it on myself and leaving DW back here so I would be the only one who saw O.S. tantruming and crying. I feared I was in for 4-5 hours of hell, counting potty breaks. Anyhow, this morning I let O.S. ride the bus to his old school, then got in the van and raced over to meet him there. I think Y.S. must have seen me there because I could hear him screaming up a storm before the buses were unloaded. A para brought O.S. over to where I was trying to hide. O.S. wanted nothing to do with that para or with his old teacher, both of whom were near and dear to him. I put him in the van and drove to the train depot park, just in time for the rain to start. And what a rain it was! Good thing we drove out of it and to a whole other part of the state. O.S. was happy as a clam all the way to Alexandria, something that stunned me. O.S. has an uncanny sense for landmarks and geography, so I have no doubt he knew exactly where we were going. He did great until we made that last right turn onto Louisiana Hwy. 1, which leads to the school. He cried for that last 5 minute stretch, something that has torn a little piece out of my heart every time we've gone to see him up there.

When we got back to the school, there was some confusion over where O.S. should go. I took him from the clinic to his classroom, then to the school office. Three women surrounded O.S., and he dropped to the ground. I heard him say "BAY-AITCH!" loudly, and I couldn't help but laugh. The school people weren't as amused as I was, so I quickly chided O.S. We went back to his classroom, and his dorm trainer took him to find a toy. I could hear him screaming as I left. Of course, he was fine when I called an hour later.

I suspect that O.S.'s ideal world would consist of DW and I moving to his school. I think he wanted to be back there but didn't want to be separated from me. I really have no way of knowing, other than by observing his behavior and his moods in the car.

The structure at O.S.'s school seems to have done him a world of good in the 8-9 weeks he's been up there. He was very well behaved and took direction much better than I've ever seen. His speech is much improved over what it was a few months ago. A part of me -- a fairly large part -- wanted this setup to fail miserably so we could bring O.S. back home. However, a larger part of me wants to see my boys in a situation where they can develop to their fullest potentials. I hurt when O.S. cries about going back, but I rejoice in knowing that he is improving.

Y.S. was a holy terror the whole time O.S. was home. Jealousy, jealousy, jealousy!

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