Day Care Hell (loooooong)

I have been thinking about writing this for the last 5 months or so, but it is rather depressing so I just have not.
But. That was until I meat the day care b-i-t-c-h from hell aka Eggenberg today.
To summarize it: Vince day care now is WONDERFUL. We love it, they love him and care for him beyond any dreams we could ever have had. But he can only stay there till he is 3. After 3 you start Kindergarten in Austria.
We have tried to get him to stay an extra year, because of his DS, and the day care wants him too. But they get money from the Bundesland (kind of like a state) we live in, and the Bundesland says NO, arguing if he is so ‘handicapped’ we should apply for a special needs day care. Fine in theory, but not in practice. Vince needs the carrot of other kids running ahead and showing him what is possible, otherwise my kid has the talent of becoming very lazy, hence not developing hardly at all.

Vince is developing very well. And yes, as someone suggest recently I am aware of my kid’s diagnose, and no I am not trying to deny it either. BUT he is only as disabled as one makes him.
I also truly and fully belive Vince is developing so well because we challange him. We do make him have to try it on his own before we just give it to him. We only have one kid, and we are trying our best, and so far we are happy with his development. Of course we could always do more, I think most parents feel that way though.

This week is Kindergarten registration for fall 2009. Only this week.
So far we have been to 6 places. 1 we left with out registering in. The second was great, but they only have 2 free spaces, we will know if we get one in April/May.

Today we went to 3 others. The two first were OK.

Oh yeah, I forgot to say. In Vince group now there are 11 kids. Vince is the only one with any type of diagnose. He does not have an extra person for him. He is just like the other kids.
In Kindergarten there are 25 kids to 2 adults. That is so not optimal for us, Vince would disappear in a corner and sit there all day. So of course our goal is to find a smaller place for him. Not so easy though.

Most often the kids with a diagnose are lumped into one group, that is then made smaller. Maybe 4-5 kids with something, and then 10-12 kids that are just ‘normal’. There is also 3-4 adults. Usually they also have things like speech, physical therapy, ergo therapy IN day care. Opposed to what we do now, drive to three different appointments a week and puzzling with the schedules.

All of those groups in the whole city of Graz are half day groups. That means you have to pick up your child latest 1 pm. We are looking for a whole day day care. You know I have a store? Bookie goes to Korea a lot? etc…

There is also ONE day care in Graz (Austria’s second largest city, 250,000 people) that is a special needs day care with all day day care. This one is located approx 45 minutes one way by car from us. Pretty much as far away as you can get.

As I said, the two first day cares today were very nice and informative and explained how it works legal wise etc. They would put down on their list to try to get approved from the Bundesland (state) to have the smaller group be an all day group. The second lady pretty much guaranteed us a place in her group in one year (hoping Vince can stay one more year where he is) as then she will get the resources she needs for this.

Then we went to hell in Eggenberg (part of Graz). The lady there, a DAY CARE BOSS, told us immediately that she would have no space for a child like Vince. He needs the help they offer at the special needs day care. There they have the extra resources like a PSYCHIATRIST and more experienced personnel.

I flipped.

I said we are not looking for that, we are looking for an integration group where our son can LEARN from other children. (Don’t get me wrong, the special needs place is great I am sure, but there are other kids than Vince than needs a place there more than we do).

She then looked at me with the pity look, saying something like I misunderstood the whole thing how she meant it. She just meant that there the personnel could take care of kids like Vince.

I was so mad. SO MAD. I just told her that I knew what is best for Vince and we have also been recommended by the ‘experts’ that know Vince since he was 6 weeks old that that is NOT the right place for him.

She still thought we should go and take a look at it, as she again mentioned they do have psychiatrists there.

I just took Vince and left. He was happy to leave anyways. I was SO MAD I just cried bitter, stupid people, what type of woman is she, and how the hell can she be a leader at a day care-type of tears.

Thankfully B is NOT in Korea and was there too. He was also really upset. This is so not the last story about day care, but enough for today. Sigh. Some people just plainly SUCK.

I know my kid has an extra chromosome. I know what it does and how it affects him. I know what he can do now, but not all he will be able to do in the future. I am also of the firm believe my kid is just as disabled as we or society makes him. If you want him to learn nothing, he probably won’t, but if you challenge him and teach him, only Vince knows what the future may hold. Without challenging him he will be a burden to society and taxpayers. He will be in need of constant services and tax payer’s special needs money. But I am sorry, we are not heading down the do-nothing-path. We are walking the do-it-our-way-path, and Vince is going to come out an even bigger champ in the end. I swear, I just know it!

19 Responses

  1. I know it too. Vince is so lucky to have you and Bookie as parents. I am sorry it is so difficult. I don’t yet know how it is going to go for us, but I am dreading it.

    HUGS

  2. Jag förstår att du blev arg. Ni känner ju Vince och vet vad som är bäst för honom. Hon ni pratade med hade ju bara träffat honom ett par minuter. Stå på dig. Du har rätt!

  3. Styrkekram!
    Vilket moment 22 ni står inför..har inget bra att peppa med med än att jag hoppas det blir en bra lösning i slutändan för V.

  4. I am so sorry to hear about the SUCKY lady at the daycare – but just think about it – you can walk away, and she has to be SUCKY forever! 🙂
    It can’t be easy and I know you will find the perfect place for Vince – just hang it there!

  5. Vince kan skatta sig lycklig som ha så underbara föräldrar. Du är så bäst hjärtat och jag vet att det kommer ordna sig för er. Håll ut! Tantajävlen på dagiset är dum och borde inte arbeta med barn. Eller med människor alls. :0(

  6. amen sista!!!!!

  7. I agree with Loren, you get to walk away and find somewhere BETTER, but she will always be sucky! And sucky people suck! Vince deserves much better than some sucky lady!

  8. Oj oj oj vilken pärs! Hoppas verkligen att ni hittar ett ställe. Vilket projekt. Hur har de tänkt sig att småbarnsföräldrar ska hinna med att åka runt så där.

    Ibland kan det vara svårt att stå på sig, men du verkar ha skinn på näsan. Kompromissa inte, det lönar sig i längden.

    Håller tummarna.
    Kram Erika.

  9. Sicken satkärring!
    Ni har vårt fulla stöd. Vi håller tummarna för att ni hittar något bra ställe till Vince.
    Kram!

  10. Argh. Good for you for telling her off! Why on earth would he need a psychiatrist on hand all the time? That doesn’t even make sense.

    I have to believe that the right things will come along…I hope you get a good spot someplace fabulous.

  11. Oh, I am mad for you. What is wrong with people? Is it that hard to make an effort and to show a little bit of compassion and empathy? I hope that all of this works out and that you can forget this stupid woman and her ridiculous comments soon. FYI – I was talking to a mental health nurse just yesterday and I asked her how many adults with Ds she saw – she said almost none! I was happy to hear that.

  12. Jag förstår att lejonmamman i dig vaknar! Hittills har jag tagit Österrike som gott exempel på integration osv men detta verkar ju inte vara toppen direkt. Vi ligger ju själva i fejd med kommunen och mötena har varit allt annat än konstruktiva och positiva. Kanske kan vi stötta varandra i detta? Stor kram

  13. that really does suck. don’t give up though, there has to be a perfect place for vince out there.

  14. It takes just ONE person to ruin a day, doesn’t it?
    Something as special as choosing your sons school could have been a wonderful experience that day…Shame on the lady.
    My heart is with you C – as our move comes closer I am faced with starting everything over.. WE are our children’s advocates! That is it! Your attitude is a wonderful one and a strong one. It makes me want to high five you right through the pc. OUR kids deserve a chance. It is 2009 and attitudes of the past need to be left there. Hang in there – The right door for Vince and for you guys will open.

  15. Med ert engagemang för ert fantastisk barn kommer ni att få till världens bästa lösning för just er prins.

    Ibland tvingas man (av andra) att bli starkare som person än vad man vill vara. Att gråta en ganska stor skvätt i ilska och frustration brukar hjälpa längs vägen….

  16. Come over from Welcome to Illinois! Good job Mom on advocating!

  17. I’m so proud of you. You are 100% right as always. Stay strong, stay true, and Vince will outshine all of your expectations. Don’t give that foolish lady another thought. She has no idea was true perserverance and capability is about.

  18. […] Remember how we kept getting the suggestion to put him in the special needs day care? Turns out the city gets a FAT pay check or whatever you want to call it for each kid with a diagnose that goes there. And as if that was not enough, they also claim 80% of VINCENT’S Pfelgegeld (vardbidrag/ money we get per month because he has a diagnose don’t know what it is called in English). Yep, they claim if he is in the all day group, they do the major caring for OUR kid and sweep up a whopping 80% of that. I am SO mad about the flaky bureaucracy crap. (You have a problem with me saying that, come on call me, leave a comment, email me: I will show you what WE pay in tax, I will show you the people WE employ in my store and at home with baby sitting etc, you will NOT win this argument, that shiz is corrupt). […]

  19. […] got our decision regarding day care last week. Remember, I wrote about it here and here? Vince is not allowed to stay where he is now. But we DO have an other day care space […]

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