Monday, October 28, 2013
On my To Do List for at least two years, has been Call Attorney Re: Special Needs Trust and Guardianship. I moved that sucker from list to list to list never once picking up the phone. Didn't want to open Pandora's box, didn't want to start the ball rolling, not knowing just where it would roll, didn't want to do it, period.
Finally, the pain of not doing it, became worse than the pain of doing it, and so I made the call. STM and I met with the attorney on Friday, and let me just say this about that: I had the best sleep that night that I've had in years.
I know the issue of guardianship can be controversial - declaring your child incompetent is not something we take likely. Who wants to declare that? Who doesn't want their child to achieve independence, to be able to make good adult choices on their own? We all want that, but not all our children are really headed that way, anytime soon anyway.
To us, the question came down to this: Does Wil want and need us to keep doing what we're doing, after he's 18? Yes.
The attorney was trying to get a general sense of Wil by our description, so he could guide us and answer our questions. I should have just showed him this picture, as it's a common sight in our house. Wil often gives me his "son," Elmo, to watch while he's at school - tells me when Elmo needs to take a nap, what he needs to learn from me as he's homeschooled, and when he might want a snack. Sometimes he's worried I will forget the ever-important snack, so he provides one for Elmo, himself.
On Sunday the family gathered to honor the one-year mark since STM's father's passing. We met at the cemetery, said a few words, then gathered back at STM's family home to eat Snickers ice cream bars, and toast a man we all loved and miss. As brief as it really was, we were all exhausted when it was over - grief is an ass-kicker. In the car, STM asked, "What's everyone going to be doing when we get home? I will be watching football."
"N-A-P-P-I-N-G!" I answered.
Wil piped up from the back seat, "K-I-S-S-I-N-G E-L-M-O!"
While he may be "incompetent" when it comes to making his own health care or financial decisions, while he needs help brushing his teeth and putting on a belt, while he cannot prepare even the simplest meals for himself or use both a knife and fork, he is quite competent in his endless ability to demonstrate and teach how to love.