Friday, December 12, 2008

Seeing my girl again...

Some of you know that I used to work as a one-on-one aide for a sweet little kindergarten girl with autism. Well, her father called me out of the blue yesterday and asked me if I could go with his wife to help with the kids (Angela, her twin sister and her little brother) when they went to a Christmas party at the elementary school I used to work at. A family member was originally supposed to be going with them, but couldn't make it, so they thought to call me. I'm so glad they did! Even though little Angela seemed very confused (she goes to a different school in the district now, and hasn't been to Ivan Green since last school year, and I think was searching her mental data banks, trying to figure out where she was), I was still very glad to see her again and glad to be able to be a blessing to her mom.
Last time I saw Angela was 5 months ago in July at her birthday party. I'm not really sure she remembered me tonight (she wouldn't say my name without her mom prompting her). I didn't see that look of recognition she gave me when I saw her in July. She pretty much wouldn't look at me at all. I actually think she was too distracted by all the stuff going on and trying to remember when she'd been to this place before. I did see a few kids from her afternoon classroom last year that remembered me (which surprised me) and I got to see the principal and a few of my old co-workers. They were thrilled to hear about my craft show and the consignment shop.

Here's Angela with Santa...
The poor thing ended up falling asleep after we had a snack in the cafeteria, and so I held her and let her snuggle up to me while her mother took her sister to the book fair.

It kind of felt just like old times (the familiar picture of Kira and Angela...always together...practically attatched at the hip!), but it was different. It was very nice to be there as a friend of the family and not just as "the aide". It felt good to know I was there simply because I love her and not because it was my job. I'm so glad her parents have decided to keep in touch with me. I guess I'm sorely missed, and the aide she has now (in her dad's words) "pales in comparison"...although I'm not sure how true that is. I don't think I was anything special. I just loved her...tried to do what was best for her, and listened to the more trained induviduals around me.
But as much as I know they wish I had stayed and been her aide again, I knew it was time for both of us to move on. I know God has me where He wants me to be. And He has her where He wants her too.
Although I really wish my mom could have ended up being her aide...she would have been wonderful with her. But she's an aide for BOCES 1 now for a 5-year-old who is at the cognative level of a 9-month-old.

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