September 16, 2009

Big Al

Yesterday was a good day for Alex at school. When I picked her up after football practice she was smiling from ear to ear. I can tell from her "Hi Mom" what kind of day she has had - and when I heard the tone of her greeting my whole body was happy.

Alex wants to be just like every other kid. She wants to have girlfriends and she wants to have boyfriends. She does have a huge amount of acquaintances - but except for the basketball team girls, she has does not have a group of kids that she regularly socializes with. The basketball team girls deserve a whole entry themselves, they are an incredible group of teenagers. They all have nicknames for each other and last year hers was "Big Al".

Alex spends part of the day in the resource room and she does have good relationships with her peers in that classroom. However, she does not do anything socially with these kids. I know this is something I need to work on - but I haven't - yet. Just like other kids, she wants to go out to the movies, or to dinner or just hang with a group of peers. She really misses this in her life.

As it turn out, a couple of days ago, one of the basketball girls, who is senior, asked Alex if she wanted to go to lunch with her at subway. Alex came home beaming - "Mom - can you give me money to got out to lunch with Ashley?" As you can imagine, I emptied out my wallet, which as usual only had about ten dollars in it, so Alex could have lunch. I was very happy to miss lunch that day.

I had my normal protective mother conversation with Alex. I explained that sometimes seniors having other commitments and might forget about the lunch date. I was hoping to prepare her in case something else came up in a busy senior's life. I am still trying to figure out the balance between teaching Alex about the real world and trying to protect her from it. Of my three kids, Alex is the one that takes things the most literally - if someone says they are going to do something - that means they are - and Alex does not forget!

Lunch did happen - just a day later than Alex expected. Ashley did have another obligation and forgot and could not take Alex to lunch on the promised day. This is not a bad thing in my book , because I know that stuff happens. However, although I do not know the details, Alex was disappointed, and she has trouble dealing with this emotion. But as always, Mr. S was there and he helped her understand. Later about Mr. S - her unbelievable teacher.

So yesterday, when I picked Alex up and she was so happy I knew lunch had happened. She said they went to subway with three other basketball girls and it was really fun. "Mom", she said, "They are my friends, they call me Big Al".

I can not wait for basketball season to start.

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