Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Huge Milestone

On July 3, 1995 Miss Stephanie was seen at Rehab at Aiea in Hawaii for a Speech-Lanuage Evaluation. It was just the first of many evaluations for her, it was the one that I had been screaming at doctors to get for a good while. She was 4.4 years old, and by the time it was over I knew just how sever her delay was. She tested overall total language age equivalent of that of a 1 year 5 month old child. On November 18-20 we sat down with the team for the school to sign into action her very first IEP. Today Stephanie and I signed her 13th IEP, and her very last one. She hasn't used anything that she is entitled to in a good 3 years now. We have kept in in place as an umbrella for just in case she should need something. Come this spring with the change of a federal law Stephanie will no longer qualify for an IEP. There is still a year to year and a half delay in her expressive language but all other areas are either right on or very much above according to the testing. We will meet with her counselor sometime in the upcoming months to talk about the possibility of doing a 504, and Steph has asked that she be the one to make the final decision on pursuing that or not. For more years than I can remember all she has really wanted was to not have that IEP anymore, to not be viewed as a child with special needs. Today we signed the final one, and I agreed to let her make up her own mind on the 504 plan. Now I will of course make sure that she understands everything and asks all the important questions, but I guess my time of having to step a little to the side and let her make some big life choices is on it's way here in the next couple of months. I am so proud oh my Miss Stephanie, she has worked so very hard and done so very much. She has gone further than a lot of people ever thought she would, and dealt with more mean peers than any one child should have to. She learned to stand up and fight, and to show them all just what anyone can accomplish when they set their mind to it. Yeah, I'm a little emotional here tonight. I'm happy and I guess scared at the same time here and feeling just a little sad maybe. I know I'm done yet with her, but as of today being the one to have to make the choices for her is done. Now she gets to make the next one on her own. Yes I still have to be a part of it or at least sign the paperwork for it, but she gets to make the choice of weather or not to do it at all.
I'm so proud of you Nennie!

1 comment:

Connie (aka momof5gents) said...

WOO-HOO!!! Congratulations to you both! I'm so proud of Stephanie for her hard work and her independent, self-advocating attitude!

I know all the blood, sweat, and tears that go into the world of specialists, IEPs and 504s. Mom deserves many kudos on this one as well!

Hugs,
Connie