Friday, March 22, 2013

What I want for my son

Yesterday was IEP day. We had to amend his current IEP for the rest of the school year due to Morgan slipping in reading, though his grades are great, and I went ahead and got the ball rolling for third grade. During the course of the meeting, a lot of questions were asked on all sides concerning Morgan's welfare. This is typical IEP stuff. We hammered out a great new IEP for Morgan which, I hope, will serve him well in the coming months.

There was one question, though, toward the end that will stay with me for years. The Occupational Therapist (OT) asked me, "Where do YOU see Morgan?" Since it was an open question, I answered without hesitation, "I see my son growing up and hopefully going to college. Empowering himself with knowledge. Advocating for himself; maybe one day sitting in front of Congress and advocating for his Autistic peers. That's what I see for him." She looked me and replied, "Great answer... but I was talking about third grade."

That's the thing. Whenever I go into an IEP meeting, of course I'm looking at the current school year and the next one. I'm anticipating how this current IEP will affect him one, three, five, ten years down the road. I assume others do this, too. 

What do I want for my son? I think I know.

I want Morgan to grow up knowing he's loved. I think most all parents want that. But I really want my child to know that his family loves him. 

I want my son to grow up with the knowledge to advocate for himself, not just on the Autism front, but on any front. Self advocacy is an all encompassing area and something that not too many people are good at. I want for Morgan to be diplomatic when needed, but also forceful when he has to be. 

I would love for him to advocate for others. I meant that. Morgan, even at this age, has a clear sense of right and wrong and I would love to see this put to good use. Who better to advocate for Autistics than an Autistic? Morgan will have grown up seeing the wrongs in the system and having his parents explain to him exactly why those things are wrong. I don't see those issues disappearing in ten to fifteen years, so I don't see why my son can't participate in the discussion on how to solve them. 

I want for my son to go to college. That's a given in this household where higher education of any kind is some sort of gold standard. We want him to have that experience because it's an experience we've had. Call us selfish, but we push our son to try his hardest and he does.  

I see Morgan being an engineer one day or a mathematician. Or, as I said in the IEP, "some sort of other geek related career where he's happy as a lark."  I believe firmly in pushing his strong points and interests and I'll continue to do so.

I want, one day in the very far (FAR) future for Morgan to be married. Have kids. Own a house. But God, he'd better wait a long time because I don't know how well I'd handle it. 

I view my son's disabilities as different abilities most of the time, not things which cripple him. Granted, I've let them get me down at some points, but I don't want them to get him down. 

I want so much for my son. I'm determined that if he wants it, too, he'll get it. I'm not raising people who give up. I'm showing them by example that this is never an option.


  1. I do the "I want" game a lot for James. I want everything for him but my biggest WANT is for him not to NEED me doing my behind the scene frantic dance for him to be successful. I wonder how I work that into his IEP?

    1. Is that kind of like NOT doing the "I need to pee" dance? Because I can't do either of those dances yet, lol. I want that, too. I'm just not sure how to either get him to that point OR how to let go. I'm a control freak like that. Points for admitting it?