Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Living with an Exceptional Learner

My Jad kissing his cousin. His love and care for babies is like no other.

 Last week, I attended a support group for parents of exceptional learners and what a relief I tell ya! For a few years now, I have been suspecting that my son fell under the gifted learners' umbrella but since I taught children who fall on the other end of the continuum I had little knowledge of all the characteristics of such children. 

Jad, came across as a very sensitive, emotional and intense boy (example: Mammoth Story) whose questions and reasoning were way beyond his years.We, many times, were not certain how to react to his fluctuating behavior; in a span of minutes he could go from high to low with no apparent reason why. Here was a boy who could argue his way out of a paper bag (Example: Reasoning)  and then cry incessantly if he lost his treat for not following a rule. His questioning and continuous probing seemed, to an outsider's untrained ears, as being rude. He always thought and felt at a totally different level than his peer group (Example: X-rated Knowledge) which provided him with endless social struggles. A brush on the arm by a peer walking by, seemed to him like a punch thus bringing on a reaction from him that would get him into trouble. To sum things up, EVERYTHING is exaggerated in my kid's life. 

My heart literally ached every time I heard that he was having trouble connecting with other children as I knew what a kind hearted caring boy he was. I longed for his teachers, classmates and parents to see him through my eyes (Example: One understanding parents compared to the others). I could not go around telling people that they should be more understanding towards him as they are with the physically or mentally challenged students.

Attending the support group gave me an insider's look at what other parents experience and go through in their daily lives with their exceptional learner children. A sigh of relief escaped my troubled body every time one of them shared something that was remotely close to Jad's descriptions. My feelings were verified, validated and shared. He is a normal, happy go lucky, caring, smart and gorgeous boy whose needs will thankfully be understood and met at school. As parents, our need for support and strategies will also be met and I am relieved. These sessions brought me some insight on what goes on in my boy's head and would provide me with tools that I need to be able to handle difficult situations. My husband and I have been trying our best but there is always room for improvement. Please wish us luck!


janzi said...

Well, I am happy that you have found support in knowing a bit more about your son and children like him.. He sounds very very intelligent and mature for his age.. if he asks questions, he has a thirst for knowledge.. He will settle to his level at school given time, and he will have friends around him I am sure.. this parenting lark is hard and no joke, but do not worry about giving him short... your hearts will guide you to do the best for him.. You are lucky parents indeed to have such a clever boy and a loving one at that, so count your blessings, and remember we all flew by the seat of our pants as parents!! Good luck and hope your week is a good one, just love the pic at the top of your blog.. lovingly gorgeous*

Tabouleh said...

Thank you sunshine... Your words mean so much to me. YES, we are definitely lucky parents to have been blessed with Jad... we are happy that he chose us as parents... Thank you for taking the time to read my post!

Birdie said...

I to am glad that you have found people to connect with. Have you ever read anything on the Highly Sensitive Child? There is also a very good book called "Too Loud Too Bright Too Fast Too Tight: What to Do If You Are Sensory Defensive in an Overstimulating World". I have read a lot on the subjects and found them so helpful. Good luck!

Tabouleh said...

HI Barbara... I have not read any of these books... When I am done with the book that I have on Exceptional Children, I will have to look them up and order them... they sound interesting and would give me much insight as to what goes on with my child... I also think that he gets much of emotional state and sensitivity from me... will see... thank you for the recommendations.