In just 7- short days my kids will go back to school. Or at least they will be engaging in a version of school online. They are not ready, I am not ready, and to be honest, I am not certain my District is ready. But the truth is- no matter how much time we had, I am not sure any of us would be. Because at the heart of all of this is, what we have to remember is, that none of us have ever done this before.
Though the virtual nature of this is certainly still new, the “newness” factor is not. As the parent of a child with Down syndrome in a time when expectations for those with Ds is ever- changing, he has been the “first” do do may things in the communities we have lived. He has been the “first” more often than I wish were true. It used to bother me more than I could say, and though I still don’t love it, there is a certain freedom in being part of that first round of opportunity.
For when we are among the first, anything is possible. There had been no “we have tried that and we know it won’t work”. There are more questions than there are answers and there is truth to be found for those that are committed to finding it. There is no “hierarchy” of one person thinking they know better than another in terms of which path to take or how move love along that path as we go, based on their previous experience. There is only a destination, and there is an opportunity to discover the best way to get there, together.
For the first time, our system aligns with what we want for our kids. It is not about what you know, but about what you can learn, what you can discover, and what you are willing to try. It may not be in the location that we want it to happen, but the opportunity to be part of that discovery makes me want to jump right in, even if I have to take a deep breath and count to 10 before I do.
Kristin Enriquez has dedicated her life's work to children with learning challenges and helping people work together to realize each student's potential. She is the proud mother of 4 children, one of which has Down syndrome. She is not an experienced blogger, or a professional website creator, but she does "tell it like it is," is a collector of facts, and loves sharing the amazing experiences and knowledge that have found her along the way,