Friday, June 4, 2010

wrappin' up the week

It's almost like being back at school again!  I had inservices Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday this week.  A "Spcial Ed Blitz".  It's the first time (and probably the last with all the budget cuts) that we've had this.  I spent most of the three days listening to a nationally-known consultant speak about autism.  I enjoyed what he had to say, but by this afternoon, it had gotten a little dry.  He told many stories, but one stood out. 

He ran a residential camp for autistic kids for several summers.  One of the kids' mothers had asked if someone would take her son to Mass, and he had agreed.  Not finding any volunteers among the staff members, he proceeded to take PJ to Mass on Sunday.  One of PJ's obsessions was fast food - the whole experience - ordering, eating, whatever.  Anyway, they talked about behavioral expectations before Mass, and the camp director said he was happy to see that when they arrived at the "church in the middle of nowhere" PJ was very comfortable.  The routine at Mass is always the same,  the priests dress the same, it is very predictable - something very important to those with autism.  All went well until Holy Communion.  As he approaches the priest - PJ raises one finger, and in his monotone voice says, "One Body of Christ!"   The story probably plays much better in person than in a blog - sorry!  PJ's explanation:  You order food products!  Made perfect sense in his head...

The last three mornings I've been to Mass at the church that burned.  This morning, though, Father mentioned that his church did NOT burn.  It was the church BUILDING that burned.  The Church was alive and well and gathered in the library for adoration, benediction and Mass. 

Wednesday, when I got home, my older child mentioned that his ear was hurting.  I diagnosed it as "swimmer's ear" and called the doctor to see if they could call something in without me bringing him in.  They were able to, and I put the drops in his ear that evening.  Apparently they don't work immediately.  He woke me up about 1 a.m. to tell me the other ear was also hurting.  I did what I could, but he spent most of the night on the recliner and didn't sleep very well.  When I was leaving for Mass Thursday morning, he was up and about, so I asked him if he wanted to come.  Surprisingly, he said, "Sure!"  About 15 minutes into Mass he whispers to me, "I don't feel good."  Not wanting to make a big scene, but not wanting him to barf if the middle of the library chapel, I gave him the car keys and sent him out.  He had been fine 15 minutes earlier, and I figured he'd put the A/C on in the car and listen to his CD for another 15 minutes and it wouldn't kill him.  On his way out, one of the ladies in the parish stopped him, and took him into the kitchen where she sat him down and made him a nice glass of ice water. I thought that was so nice of her!  He rejoined me a little while later, and he feels much better today.  He was dizzy, he said.  That happens with ear issues.

This morning, I was back there again.  I forgot that Adoration started at 6 a.m.  When I got there slightly before 7, it was almost a full house.  There was a light rain as I walked in, but you could tell that more was coming, so I took my umbrella with me.  As Mass progressed, you could see it get dark outside and see the lightening and hear the thunder.  The rain came down in buckets!  To get back to my car 30 minutes later, I had to take off my socks and shoes and roll up my pants (and my legs are oh-so-attractive) and wade through about 6 inches of water.   Then I broke the cardinal rule of never driving through water when you cannot see the road.  I knew the road was down there....somewhere. 

The drama from last school year has turned into drama for next school year.  Got an automated phone call from the principal yesterday saying that he had to cut 5-7 teachers from our staff, and that there would be a lot of changes and he would let us know more on Monday.  So far, I've heard of 3 who are gone.  Two were only there one year, but one of our coaches has been there for several years.  It's just not good.  Our class sizes will be larger; every year more is expected of us (higher test scores, etc); and every year the powers that be make it more difficult for those of us in the trenches to succeed. 

Guess there will be plenty to pray about this summer, too!


  1. Not sure if this posted the first was doing something weird!
    I got the boy at communion once I realized that he was ordering the Body of Christ! That is too funny!
    When I used to ask my mom what time church was, she would say, "Church is always there...Mass starts at ______."
    That's terrible about the teachers being cut. I just saw in the paper that the system where I work is not cutting positions like they were going to a month ago. Hope your job is safe; I'll remember you in my prayers!

  2. I will join you in the prayers...