I love to see him busy in a new way. He is always thinking of new ideas, his mind is going a mile a minute. He wakes up early, (still goes to bed late) keeps an organizer, packs a lunch, and has devoted himself to managing his time. Hopefully my experience has given me the perspective to be patient and not forget what it is like to juggle all the responsibilities of a classroom. We still make a big deal of eating dinner together but some nights I am in class. Luckily, he seamlessly transitions from the classroom back into the home and all the juggling of dinner, homework, and bathtime.
We talk a lot about his parents. We can’t help imagine what his parents would say. His father would have all kinds of advice about managing the adults in Joe’s classroom. We are confident his experience as a truck driver and a mover would come in to play. We can almost hear his voice telling Joe to remember to “lift with his legs” when he is moving students in and out of wheelchairs.
His mother on the other hand would have lots to ask and explain with the tube feedings, seizures, medication, and needs of his students. Her experience as a respiratory therapist and working in ER would inform so much of what she would say.
We miss these two voices in our life. But like I tell Joe all the time. If they were here, they would impressed and blown away by his perseverance. He persists when others would give up. My kids are lucky to have him as their role model.