Friday, October 21, 2011


My son’s therapeutic school offers a wonderful program where teaching assistants come to your house and spend time with your child. At first, the TAs primarily just play with the child and begin to develop a relationship with him. Later, they may take him places to teach him proper behaviors in various real-life settings.

The goal is to provide both mentoring for the child, and respite for the parents.

We have been on a waiting list for about a year, but were recently notified that our participation in the program can begin.

The first time that Kai’s mentors came over, we stayed with them to ease the transition.

This past Saturday was the second time they came and this time we left them alone with Kai. They played some games and put up Halloween decorations outside. They seem to be off to a good start in getting to know him, and vice versa.

The idea for the respite is for the parents to get a break from their child. I’m sure most parents use the opportunity to get away for a meal at a restaurant or perhaps go for a romantic walk.

We did yardwork.

My wife and her father planted bulbs. I raked and bagged leaves. Not very romantic, I know.

But, it was wonderful.

I enjoy engaging with Kai when I am doing my yardwork. When he was younger, Kai liked following me around as I mowed the yard. And fall was especially fun as he loved jumping in the piles of leaves that I amassed.

But his interest in these activities seems to be fading each year. These days, if I can get Kai to come outside with me at all, he wants me to play with him rather than do my chores. And so, I rarely get the uninterrupted time to do all the yardwork that needs to be done.

And so it was quite nice to have some of that time this past weekend.

For most, yardwork is a chore. For me, getting a chance to do it was a good respite.


  1. The new faces to adapt to will be good for Kai. Good for you...everyone wins.

  2. Yes, the more exposure Kai has to a variety of people, and the more practice he gets with communicating and socializing with them, the better off he will be.


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