I swung by the office on the last day of school and picked up Wil's meds from one of the secretaries. "Two down, two to go," she said. "Can you believe how fast that went?"
No, I cannot believe how fast the last two years have gone, and I am pretty sure the next two will fly by equally fast, if not more so.
Wil's friend, Jack, had an end-of-the-year party for the kids and teachers in Wil's program, which just wrapped its second year in operation. Jack's mom, Patty, and I regaled the teachers with all of our various back-up plans if this program hadn't have gotten off the ground, or if, God forbid it did, but our boys weren't accepted into it. We had plans A, B, C, D, and E. One plan even involved us taking up residence in the Seattle area. As I looked around at the teachers gathered there, the kids from the first cohort and the kids from the second, as I imagined the party a year from now with kids from the third cohort, and a year after that the kids from the fourth, I almost cried with the joy of a realized dream. A dream that took years, and at times felt like moving mountains, but a dream realized, none-the-less.
What Wil does in two short years doesn't have the walls around it yet - it's still a dream. I want him to work in a preschool, and he will be volunteering for the third year this summer as practice, as preparation, and perhaps even as a precursor. If the stars line up the way I'm hoping they do, he'll work there part time, year-round, when he finishes high school.
If you ask Wil what he's going to do after high school, he will tell you he's going to move to Anaheim and live in the castle at Disneyland. He is going to get married, have kids, and they are all going to live in the castle. He will work, and his wife will be the "cleaner upper." There are so many obvious problems (and objectionable presumptions) about this scenario, I don't know where to begin. So, I will not begin. I will be present in the moment. I will relish every minute of the next two years that we believe are ahead of us, and I will simultaneously put one foot in front of the other, marching forward, onward, into a future that is not what the past has been, but I trust will be every bit as bright.
Carrie is a parent and advocate of a child with special needs and even more special gifts. She blogs at http://carrielink.blogspot.com/ where this is pretty much her favorite topic. Carrie’s book, WIL OF GOD: Embracing the Relentless Love of a Special Child, is available in print on Amazon and all e-readers.