Thursday, October 23, 2008

Day Five: Fourth Day of Training

Today we perfected yesterday's technique on Charlie. He was out like a light in no time and that made it really easy. We got in almost an hour of work on him. Then, we learned our third technique, which involves pressing near their ears. Tomorrow we will perfect it on Charlie and then we'll get our going home instructions. I am really excited to get to work on all the things we've learned. I feel more optomistic about this than I have about anything in a long while.

Did mention that Charlie's trainer called him smart today? And the office manager, Patricia? Yeah, that's my baby. They probably say that to all the moms, but I couldn't care less!
After our training we went to eat at Schwartz's, which supposedly has the best sandwiches in Montreal. You wait in a line outside just to get in. There's only about five things on the menu, but everyone says that you just get the sandwich. The sandwich consists of a smoked meat that reminds me of corned beef, two little slices of bread, and mustard. Everything else is a la carte: pickes, peppers, cole slaw, or fries. The sandwich was good, but a little too meaty for my tastes. The fries were excellent.

After that we headed out to the Montreal Botanical Gardens. They have a Chinese garden with an illumination display. It was pretty cool, but WAY to bumpy for a stroller. Then we went inside to see the pumpkin display, which was out of this world. It featured about a million pumpkins that had been decorated by people from ages 3-103. It was insane what a person can do with a pumpkin.

I wanted to add a couple of thoughts about my journey since tomorrow will be a big travel day and so will Saturday. I don't know if I'll get to a computer again before my brain empties.

I spent most of my life thinking that people with motor defecits were also deficient mentally. The deeper I get into the world of being a "special momma," the more I realize that not only is this not always the case, but I wouldn't even say that it's the norm. You absolutely have to work harder to keep these kids up to speed with their peers. They can't explore the kitchen cabinets, so you might have to get down on the floor with them and show them. The world is still their classroom--they just don't have as much access to it as a regular kid. I used to see people pushing their disabled childred around places like the zoo and I'd think, "How sweet. . .treating them just like a normal kid." You know what? I'm an asshole. There's no reason to think that they wouldn't like the zoo or the aquarium or any of the other things that typical kids like. I've worked with kids who are clinically retarded. THEY look just like everybody else. You can't spot low IQ points from across the room. Despite some fairly in-depth experience in this area, it took having Charlie to make this clear.

And finally, a word about the fashions in Montreal. The jeans are overwhelmingly skinny here. I know all the pear-shaped women of the world are lamenting this, so let me just tell you--the skinny jeans are here. Boots, in Montreal, are pulled over the jeans. Leggings are also abundant. There are less high-heeled boots and more of those flat ones. There are lots of slouchy boots. The women here love glasses with decoration on the sides. The colors are subdued and I've seen a bunch of those floppy, knitted, beret-style hats. I might have to get myself one of those.

See you on the flip side!

Omigosh. . . spellcheck not working! Please forgive me--I know not what I do!