Christmas and into the new year

I have been utterly useless at blogging lately. I have been having problems sleeping and Dinky has been a bit stressed with Christmas.

But I must say, Christmas actually went very well!

I thought back to last year and found that opening presents and dinner were the two biggest flashpoints. So I talked to my dad and told him that presents will be done without photos or any indication of what she should open when, we will leave it all to Dinky. Then dinner, I asked Dinky what she wanted and she chose nuggets (surprise surprise) with veg and a Yorkshire pudding. So come Christmas morning we left her to it, and Dinky calmly opened all her presents, although she did leave all the ones that weren’t disney infinity characters for hours before looking at them. Which is fine, she was happy, and that’s all that mattered.
Come dinner time she sat down and had her nuggets, no issues, this year dad didn’t say anything to her about eating, and she finished the lot!

Bedtime was a tad stressful as it is every night, but she did very well!

Since then I have been trying to set things up for 2015.

Dinky’s personal budget is nearly ready, it is slightly delayed because I did all the bits the form requested except sign it… D’oh! But it is done now and sent back off, the care plan is being drawn up and I’ve met with the people who help with getting the 1:1 and all the employment stuff.
While paperwork doesn’t phase me, I think I may have to alter who has her. The current 1:1 does some things without my approval which I don’t like, such as taking Dinky to the bank or to do her own food shopping. This is NOT ok because the money she is paid is to take her where Dinky wants to go, not to run her own personal errands. Also this morning dinky told me that she hid because her 1:1’s boyfriend was shouting at her 1:1. I don’t think that is appropriate and it isn’t the first time.
So if I’m going to change the person I might aswell find a child minder who works weekends, and then I don’t have to do the paperwork, and I don’t have to pay for employers liability insurance, business use car insurance for the 1:1, I am not responsible for National insurance or tax, sick pay or maternity pay, I don’t have to pay holiday pay… All that money saved will pay for more sensory equipment ect. So win win. Dinky isn’t actually bothered about losing her 1:1 person as she will still see them at the special needs group, as she is fed up of going to places to run errands without prior warning.

So that’s something.

I have found manual driving lessons ok, but a knee problem means I’m going to switch to automatic driving lessons in the new year. So by Dinky’s birthday in February I *should* have either passed my test, or waiting for a test date (sometimes it be be upto 8 weeks for a driving test, which would take me just past Dinky’s birthday)

Dinky may be starting school on the 12th of January, although this hasn’t been confirmed, her school placement has been confirmed at the special school with a 1:1.

So I have been talking a lot about the school. Her pictures from the assessment days are still up and she seems excited. I have made lots of comments about how the special school is so different from the two mainstreams she has been in, and how much better they will look after her there.
I received a massive pack of booklets from the school which includes a behaviour policy booklet.
I cried with happiness reading it, which sounds odd, but it is the complete opposite of the behaviour ‘plan’ dinky had at the mainstream. Theirs was all ‘if she chooses to misbehave she will be punished’, and ‘disruptive behaviour will not be tolerated’… Whereas the special school says they understand that learners are not always in control of their actions, that punishments were not to be harsh, and must make sense to the learner, using restorative justice, so if a child spills something on the floor on purpose, the punishment will be to clean it up themselves. All punishments for unsatisfactory behaviour will be agreed with the learner so they understand the consequences of their actions and are included in that.

2015 won’t be plagued with calls from the school saying she is being sent home for stupid things like walking on bucket stilts or trying to escape by climbing over the fence.

2014 has been a rough year for us.

Stressful doesn’t begin to cover it, with the school and them calling social serivces, and then removing Dinky. The whole statement of SEN process which took nearly twice the legislated time, delays and muppetry. The head of the SEN team found out that I’m not one for making friends, I’m more the pain in the backside parent, who wants what is best for their child and therefore won’t let my bundle of awesomeness to end up at a school that can’t meet her needs! Nearing 11 months out of school- which has been nice in a way but also majorly exhausting.
Finally getting the diagnosis for Dinky that I had known would be the case for 2 and a half years before her diagnosis was finalised. However then it became a nightmare trying to get the ADHD assessment done, which still hasn’t been done, and now we have the dyspraxia question mark again due to Dinky’s frequent ‘clumsiness’, the school assessment picked up how often she seemed to have these little accidents, falling over, bumping herself on random pieces of equipment… We shall see about that one… My cousin has a diagnosis of dyspraxia, so it is in the family.

So 2015 will see Dinky in a new school, have a new person to spend a few hours with at weekends, an ADHD assessment, me driving, and us moving to a house with a garden!

I wish you all the best for 2015!

Thank you for reading my blog!

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