Last night I wanted to go to a meeting held here in town about South Carolina Connections Academy - an online school similar to K-12. I'm interested in learning about all of my options for schooling Olivia and Amelia in the future. Rafe was going to watch the girls for me, but unfortunately he wasn't home in time for me to go without them. What irony - the one night I go out without them turned out to be the one night he had to stay late for an all hands brief from General Amos. Can't really walk out of that one early.
Olivia was already acting very out of character during dinner. She threw her plate on the floor twice. The first time I turned her high chair around to face the wall while I cleaned it up, trying to figure out how to say, "Don't throw your food" in a positive way. It's only today that I figured out I should have said, "We keep our plates on the table when we are finished" or something similar. Still not sure. The second time she made a huge mess and I took her out of her high chair and told her dinner was finished. I've never seen her so upset. She cried and cried while I was cleaning it up.
At the meeting, she was squirming and screaming in my arms. While normally I can put her down and she will play quietly near me, this time she was running down the aisle toward the presenter so fast that I had to run down after her - all the way to the end. This happened 3 times during the night, because she would literally go limp and then frantically squirm out of my arms and she slipped away from me. I was in the back of the room and finally moved to the hallway and peeked my head around the corner of the room to try and hear what she was saying after the first 10 minutes of this. The information being presented was excellent, but I was missing so much of it that after 20 minutes, I just left with both the girls. I did learn that if you do online school, they subcontract with special needs care providers for OT, PT. And they do Speech Therapy over the internet, although I wasn't there long enough to find out how that worked.
It was such a frustrating evening even though it only lasted 30 minutes, and I couldn't help but think of the times to come. No one there knew Olivia couldn't really understand like a normal 2.5 year old the concept of behaving. I felt like a really awful mom because I kept getting dirty looks from the other parents there. She understands (I think) some actions and consequences, but concepts are something I'm having a hard time figuring out how to teach her. It all came so naturally to and with Amelia. Earlier in the day I had gone to a presentation by Butterfly Effects on ABA therapy. I think it's time for us to get involved with that so we have tools to respond appropriately to her behavior and don't accidentally reinforce it. Yesterday I also switched her Speech to the clinical setting starting May 7. All in all a busy day.
Surprisingly enough, Amelia told me this was "the best day ever!" When I asked her why, she said it was because she was spending time with me.