Etienne is going to kindergarten in 9 days. Typing that, I feel a knot in my stomach and my heart beat quickens. 9 days and than he isn't going to have me to slyly pull his thumb out of this mouth. 9 days until he won't have Blake to laugh at every sentence that makes no sense. 9 days and then he gets thrown to the wolves. Other kids, I mean.
Believe me that Ryan and I have made a million pro and con lists. Our community is surrounded by home school families while our own family is full of public school teachers. For over a year now, I have attempted to teach him his letters, numbers, colors and opposites. It has mostly been a frustrating disaster. I am a descent midwife but I am no educator. It has become very clear to us that our job in Etienne's life is to teach him LOVE and FAMILY. We also know that he needs the resources that the school district offers. Ultimately, prayerfully, the decision to send him to the neighborhood school is the right choice for now.
A while ago, I was sitting with E in a gym at the YMCA when I realized how difficult learning was for him. We were counting basketballs but he couldn't comprehend numerical values. Honestly, this hit me hard. At that time, I had a lot to process. Selfishly, I probably thought somewhere in the corner of my brain that because of our work as parents, our children would do well in school. Struggles academically were for kids whose parents didn't read to them, right? A year and a half later, I can honestly say that I don't care when Etienne learns to read. Seriously, it doesn't matter anymore. I care that he his classmates embrace his non-stop jibberish, that his teacher sees how gentle he is and that the school community gets a glimpse of God's love for us through our adoption of Etienne. He may not learn to read until the rest of the kids have moved onto multiplication. So what. It's safe to say that Etienne has survived more in his lifetime his counterparts will ever see. God is at work. Beauty out of ashes.
So many changes. Change here usually leads to some rough days. This change is hitting Zeke and Mama hard. I choke up thinking about how I can't protect him and just mentioning Etienne going to school brings tears to Ezekiel's eyes. He is so heartbroken to be left behind. I try desperately to put a positive spin on it. "Zeke, you get mama all to yourself! We can go on hikes and to the library and bake cookies and learn to read!" His reply? "I just wanna drink a lot of water." Sweet Zeke-ee baby. We can drink it by the buckets, buddy.
|When he sucks his thumb, my heart hurts that he never really got to be a baby.|