I did send the email. To give a little bit of background, the boys have been back at school for almost three weeks now. During those three weeks, we have had a somewhat rocky time at home. During the first week back, Norman in particular seemed to struggle with school. He was anxious at home, out of control of his emotions, and most mornings were spent screeching at the top of his lungs, not being able to dress himself or brush his teeth or function particularly well at all.
Three days into the new school year, I had a telephone call from one of the school staff, the learning support mentor. The reason we chose the school we did was in large part to do with the emotional support they were able to provide. She said she was “concerned” about Norman, that he had told her that Marvin had pushed him down the stairs during the night, causing him to bump his head, and that neither Mrs S nor I had bothered to check his head, and that he had subsequently spent the entire morning vomiting before we sent him on his merry way to school. It’s not the first time he’s made up an interesting tale that the teachers believed – last year he was getting new parents and moving to a different town away from his brother; the school rang to check with us as they thought we should have shared that information!
What actually happened was that he banged his head throwing a tantrum, and got so upset during the tantrum that he retched a couple of times. I was able to describe the bump to his head, because funnily enough I had actually checked that he was ok whilst I was trying to help him get dressed and ready for school and calm him down enough to get him there on time!
After explaining what had happened, and telling her all about the summer holidays and the challenges that six weeks off school presented, she assured me she would take care of him and that I should enjoy my day! This conversation was followed by a couple more calls from the headmistress, who then referred us to social services due to our family needing additional support. Something which I did myself about eleven months ago now!! I am under no illusions; our family is struggling. Our beautiful boys are struggling. We are running out of ideas for how to help them with certain things. That’s why we asked for professional help. ELEVEN. MONTHS. AGO!! So I sent the email.
Suddenly things are moving forward! Granted, it’s not at the pace we would like, there are still several hoops to be jumped through before we get the help we need, but over the last two weeks since I posted, I have been visited at home by our social worker, we have been allocated a support worker, and Mrs S and I are meeting a clinical psychologist on Monday who has experience with childhood trauma and working with young children. School have come up with some strategies that they feel will help us, and although Mrs S and I aren’t convinced that some of them are working, we’re willing to try different things on the off chance something will help.
There’s no magic wand. But we are coping, we persevere and finally we feel like help is on its way.