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Monday, June 1, 2015

He did it!


He did it!!! He passed 8th grade!!! As I waited for the ceremony to begin, I couldn’t help reflect on the difficulties we had been through in the past 9 months. As I mentioned in my previous post, this school year has been very difficult. We switched Hunter to a new school because the public school he was attending just wasn’t working. The kids were not loving and excepting of one another. He felt like he didn’t fit in with the other kids. He felt different. We knew we needed to make a change, so we did. The school we chose was much more academically challenging for him, which wasn’t great, but the kids at his knew school were amazing. When we toured the school, we noticed the commodorey between the students and teachers. The atmosphere of the school was refreshing.

The students at the new school loved Hunter from Day 1. He felt excepted. He knew he could be himself. As his Mom, it was amazing to watch him grow and not feel stifled by the typical middle school status quo. Throughout the year, he would yell at me for “doing this to him, " when the work was hard. I took it with a grain of salt because I saw an amazing change in him. Yes, the homework was difficult. He wasn’t able to keep up with every expectation the school had of him. It was frustrating at times. Through it all though, he was learning a much more important lesson. He was learning to love himself.

Tears welled in my eyes as they called his name. I watched him strut across that stage with a new found confidence to receive his diploma. The students cheered loudly, chanting his name. These students didn’t see my Hunter as a kid with Asperger’s. No, there was no label put next to his name.  Instead, they saw my Hunter as cool, quirky, funny, tall, and I’m guessing some of the girls found him pretty darned cute (I would totally be embarrassing him right now). Yes, the teacher, parents, and grandparents in that room had taught the young men and women many things, but at this moment , the students were teaching all of us so much more.