This is one of those morning's when the special needs aspect of my life rattle around my head just a little louder. May I remind you Dear Far and Between Reader, this is a special needs blog where my intention is to share that the special needs life does not take us down the average path and my vantage point sometimes takes me in odd and frustrating directions.
Today, I am simply focused on the little behaviors that I interpret as revealing a person as dismissive of those around them or caring. Now, I must remind myself to not be so black and white or even judgmental because I certainly resent being judged. So, perhaps I'll just leave this as a bit of a rant. If we are all lucky, I'll remember this in my own reactions... but don't hold your breath. As Riley's mother, I get to be Crazy Woman or the term I read recently may be more appropriate, "Dragon Mom."
The day beyond our own walls begins with the arrival of Riley's bus (bus 27127 is quite reliable and calm recently). It is my neighbors who show incredible disrespect during Riley's pick up and drop off in front of our home. On many occasions neighbors have passed by the bus while lights are flashing and Riley is loading. Last May, I fired off an email to my community not even thinking about who the latest lawbreaker may be: I simply knew I was angry and offended.
"Subject: school bus
... it is illegal to drive past a school bus loading a child... yes I see them and will definitely remember their lack of respect and consideration in this matter. Thank you."
"I know you are speaking of me as I passed the bus this morning. The red lights flash the entire time the door is open. Your child is being loaded from the house side. There is never anyone on the street side. Are you suggesting everyone sit and wait the entire time the loading process is going on? I will make sure I never leave the community by going past your house again so as to not upset you."
I shared my frustration with another friend and neighbor who seemed to empathize. This week, same neighbor drives right around the bus with flashing lights. ?. Shall I take this as my opinion and the law are not as important as your needs Dear Neighbor? I saw you. Now what should I do? Pretend that I did not?
While I was busy ruminating on the lack of respect toward my child, I drove up to Riley's school to collect him for physical therapy. Being the quiet lunch hour I parked at the front circle, threw open the jeep hatch and arranged the ramp before bringing Riley out to the car. When I returned to the vehicle, mowers were going all around and it was quite loud. My focus turned to Riley's happy greeting, removing him from the wheelchair and settling him comfortably in his car seat. When I brought my head back out from the car I turned to discover the wheelchair no longer beside me.
What?! Oh! There stood Jamie (I'm certain I've mentioned his kindness previously), the gentleman in charge of Rayma's facilities. He had just dismantled the chair as he had seen me do before, slid the heavy chair into the back of the jeep, folded up the ramp and was closing it all up nice and neat.
How do I react to this? This is an amazingly kind and sweet gesture. How many times have I loaded that chair in my own driveway, hugely pregnant and had every male neighbor - and at the time one lived in every house two to the right, two to the left, four across the way - and the only man to ever to rush to my aid (sometimes straight out of the shower and barely dressed was my own husband). There are some other random individuals to have helped over time and I remember them. I will always remember them.
Yes, it's a big deal to me. Thank you Jamie! You are pretty wonderful.
We are all special... by Stacie Wiesenbaugh