Friday, December 3, 2010

Long Term Concerns & Wishes

I spent the better part of my afternoon filling out a school application for Norrin. One application. Nine pages long. I took my time, printed as neatly as possible - even at the end, as my wrist began to ache. I needed his application to be perfect; the application was for the school that I loved. The one place where I believed Norrin could truly thrive. The school that could break my heart.

I tried to answer honestly and objectively, though I was tempted to write: Norrin is amazing and adorable; accept him.  

I reached the ninth page and the final question. What are your long term concerns and wishes for your child? I was given three lines to answer the question.

Our greatest concern is that we won't be able to secure the most appropriate academic environment to meet Norrin's needs. What if there isn't a school that can nurture his strengths as well as his weaknesses? We know for many parents, mainstream is the holy grail. That does not matter to us. We are realistic about what he can and can't do. If mainstream is a possibility, fine and if not - then that's fine too. We would never want to push him into an environment where he may be set up to fail. We know that he's bright and that he has the capacity to learn.  We don't need general education to prove that. Norrin doesn't need to be the popular kid. But if he wants friendship, we want him to have the tools to develop one. We just want him to be happy.  To feel good about himself.  To enjoy his life. To be productive.  To be himself and know that he's okay, he doesn't need to be cured or fixed.  He is a lovable little boy with a charming smile.  And we never want him to lose the qualities that make him special.  We hope that as he gets older, people will appreciate him just as he is.  

They got the edited version.      



  1. I've filled out applications like that. They expect you to only use 3 or 4 lines when you could easily write an essay! I will sincerely pray that this school accepts your awesome son!

  2. I know - it was really difficult to do. But thanks!! I hope he gets in too :)

  3. I love this! I do.

    This touched my heart in its sincerity. This touched me because it's the best goal any parent could have for any child. And this touched me because I think it's along the lines of what I've been thinking lately: don't we all just want to enjoy our lives and to be productive. Don't have to be the most popular etc just happy by our individual standards/needs :-)


AutismWonderland - written by Lisa Quinones-Fontanez - is a personal blog chronicling a NYC family's journey with autism, while also sharing local resources for children/families with special needs.