Friday, May 01, 2009

Thorry Thue

AKA..."Sorry Sue". I just got a comment from my sister to "stop leaving cryptic messages on Facebook and tell us what is going on" So in order to stay as her favorite little sister, I will share with you all. It is long. It is involved. And we don't have all the answers yet. So if you ask for anything further, you will get...NOTHING. That is my warning. Here we go...

First of all, so that no one is worrying, Mason is fine. This has nothing to do with him.

A few months ago, Ben came home with the news that they wanted to transfer him to the Anderson Air Force Base. Basically, I describe to people who haven't been here, that Guam is made up of 3 parts (for me anyway) "our end" of the island which includes the Navy base, the middle area that is more of the tourist-y area, and than the Air Force base at the other end of the island. We have one major highway. We have no freeways. So when you add in traffic, distance, that the highway speed limit ranges from 25 miles-50 mph...well the drive can actually take up to half an hour to 45 minutes a day. If not longer...

We were not happy with this news. Ben would have to do a lot of commuting, and we would not get to see him very much. I would basically have no help if the kids were involved in after school activities. And did I mention we have a baby coming? So, we decided to look into some different housing. It is called "South Fynn". It is closer to AAFB, so it would cut his commute time by ALOT. would also mean the kids would change schools,a new ward, starting all over with new scout dens, GS troops etc.

In the long run, we decided that it would not be worth it. Although we wouldn't see Ben very much, we weren't interested in uprooting everyone for a year. Ecspecially Ivan. The main reason we decided to stay? Ivan's Special Ed teacher. She is amazing and I don't know how we would have got through this first year without her.

When we first got here, the only 4 bedroom housing units that were available were the ones we are in now, New Apra. They were tearing down and rebuilding Old Apra. They are (I think) 1000 sq ft bigger than we have now. With a 2 car garage. I have not actually seen them. Ben won't let me because he didn't want me to be dissapointed if we didn't get in!! But, we decided to petition housing to be moved over. Ben feels while we have a good shot(with #5 coming soon) we also have 1)we already live in housing and 2) we only have one year left. While others who are getting in, don't have those issues. We were waiting around to hear from housing when...

I get a call from Ivan's teacher. She is leaving the island. What?! I can't even begin to explain how upsetting this was. I got off the phone and bawled! Ivan's teacher has been working with us since last summer. The first time she called, I talked to her for almost 2 hours. That is how I knew we would get along great! She has worked with him every step of the way. He has made huge improvements. Any time we have a struggle (him running off, dealing with tantrums, going to the park without us, etc) she has worked with him and given us solutions to help him. If I have a frustrating day with him, she lets me cry and vent. She wants to know what it is like to deal with everything so that she can help. His aid is fabulous too. He loves her...but he doesn't quite respond the same way.

Ms. Allison has fought to get Ivan into a regular pre-k class. He goes in once a week and has one on one with her during that day. He loves it. He has thrived in there. His progress report showed him doing better in that class than in his regular class. But she fought tooth and nail to get him in.

So she is leaving. I am like ok, where does that leave Ivan? Is he back in her class (called PSCD) or does he move on to Pre-k? Does he need a one on one teacher to be able to go into a regular ed class? I had about 1000 questions, and zero answers. I asked her and told her to be brutally honest. Please don't tip toe around anything. I wanted straight from the hip answers, not pie in the sky answers.

She let me know that because of a variety of reasons (that are personal to Ivan & I) but also because of so many upcoming staff changes, that he would be better served up at the school on AAFB.

So right now, we are looking to move out to South Fynn. We have not heard back from housing yet, and now it is the weekend. So we won't until Monday. But, we can't leave in May, so it will have to be June. One month before Mason makes his debut. This means we will begin "a whole new life" up there. New schools, teachers, home, friends, church, job (Ben)...and all of this for only a year. Then we will be off of Guam and back to the states. It is a crazy time for us.

The kids are NOT happy. They love their school, teachers, friends etc. Harmony has let me know that, " I can't believe we all have to change just for Ivan. Why can't just he go?" I am struggling with doing what is right for all of us. But I honestly think that right now, Ivan's education is very important. If he can become more self reliant, able to express himself, and get to the point where he doesn't need one on one, it will benefit our whole family. It is just hard to see it that way right now. The kids feel like we are spoiling him. What they don't understand is, if it was them, we would do the same thing.

So there you have it. We don't have any more details than that. May is shaping up to be a very busy month. We are finishing up scouts (this coming Friday) but we still have lots of baseball (games & practices), GS, mothers day events at school, spouse club stuff, a baby shower, our trip to Australia, babysitting, sharing time all month, should I go on or stop there? I feel up to my eyeballs in activities. Maybe moving away will slow things down...


Susan said...

Now, see, I thought something was wrong with the baby or someone had died or something ... I HATE cryptic FB messages.

Sounds like you have an interesting problem. Probably the only way to find a solution is prayer and contemplation. I do know, though, that sometimes change isn't as bad as you think it's going to be - I thought Toby would completely freak out when he got switched to afternoon preschool, which meant different classmates, different bus drivers, and a different schedule - but he's actually thriving. So, who knows? Good luck with it all. If you do move, get lots of help!!

Yearsley Family said...

Sounds like a lot to process all at once--especially being prego! I am with your sister, though, I thought there might be something wrong with the baby, too. Thanks for clarifying!
Good luck with everything! It will all work out--prayer will be a major factor in that--especially for your kids! Get lots of help moving--don't try to do too much!

Christy said...

There is a gal in South Flynn who just returned from Japan after having her baby early. Her name is Astra. She is a close friend of the daughter of my cohort at work. There, you already have someone there who has survived one of your possible challenges. Dar is getting her email address for me. Ben won't be the ward clerk and therefore not so busy in the evening. The Navy usually moves you every two years anyway. Did I mention a bigger house? I can see all kinds of advantages to this move. Branches are always eager for "large" families to move in so I am sure they will help lots with the older kids and Mason. He is sure to be a major ice breaker. Does incurable optimist come to mind?