Monday, November 26, 2007

Of Fingernail Clippers

The good news is that it was a Monday and Bulldozer only had two minor meltdowns -- one of which was semi-provoked. Yay. :-)

The better news is that against all expectations, Aide S's working for a certain psych care services place has only made her better at her job instead of turning her into a discrete trial drone. Yay. :-)


(You knew there was a however, didn't you?)

However, our current drama is that Aide J is just incensed because Elastigirl's parents must clip her fingernails right this second!!!!!

She has asked me to write a note requesting that they do this, but I replied that I was not comfortable doing that because they know that Elastigirl's fingernails should be cut.

(And, also, 'cause you wouldn't get the bejeezus scratched out of you if you only actually did what I told you to for more than 10 minutes at a time, and 'cause the girl could find a way to scratch if all of her fingernails were ripped off in a tragic Velcro accident. Seriously.)

In any event, she has now decided that Elastigirl's scratching is OMG A HEALTH HAZARD because she touches places that shouldn't be touched without washing your hand.

And she is, apparently, telling everybody this...according to our principal.

So I chatted with our principal after school, who grinned knowingly when I said that Aide J had been asked repeatedly to just step away when Elastigirl is scratching ('cause, you know, if you move away, she won't get attention, and -- get this! -- she'll stop scratching) and said that she would tell her the same.

But she did ask me to write the note asking that Elastigirl's fingernails be clipped.

I'm chafing at that (I've worked hard to maintain a good relationship with them, because they had some run-ins with school staff before), but our principal has been very nice and very supportive, so, hey, don't rock the boat, you know?

But this is my blog, and I'll have my say here. (So there.)

1. Elastigirl's parents know her fingernails need to be cut. Her behavior is the same at home as it is at school.

2. Elastigirl's parents have been working very hard to provide for her and do right by her, in the face of enormous challenges and obstacles. She has even done homework sometimes.

3. Elastigirl cringes and flails away from washing her hands. Can you imagine the production that is required to actually clip her fingernails?

4. Seriously. They know her fingernails should be cut. They also know she should have a bath every day, but with a kid with intense needs who has a dad on daily dialysis...sometimes things have to give -- and feeding her dinner is more important than washing her hair.

4a. Don't get all snippy with me. I know kids should have baths. But I have also been the harried sixteen-year-old sister whose dad is in the hospital and who is trying to study for midterms, pick her kid brother up from school, cook dinner, take midterms, hold together a tutoring program while the official tutor's brother is in a hospice dying of cancer, and waiting to see if her dad will wake up from his coma. Guess what? Patrick didn't get a bath that week. So sue me.

4b. Seriously? They know. Get over it and implement her behavior support plan and stop worrying about trivial things like fingernails. If you're worried they're so dirty, wash her hands. Or, you know, your cuts. That you wouldn't have (or, at least, 90% of which you wouldn't have) if you actually absorbed what I tol dyou.

4c. Seriously? They know. They're trying.

4d. While Elastigirl's "mental functioning" is in question, she unquestionably has severe delays. My brother -- my 20-year-old, mostly high-functioning brother -- would, to this day, rather chew off his fingernails than allow fingernail clippers within 50 feet of him. He would rather his toenails rip off in his socks than allow toenail clippers within 100 feet of him. Don't assume it's a matter of, "Oh, c'mere, Elastigirl, let me cut your fingernails, honey."

4e. Seriously? They know.


Allow me to rephrase that: If I have only so much good will with this family, I'd rather use it on the thing that is causing such severe pain that hitting herself is the only thing that will make it feel better than on something they know should be done anyway.


Amusing bookmark to this story. I, I admit, whined at one point, "Oooh, she's such a thorn in my side sometimes."

The principal looked askance at me. "Aide J, not Elastigirl," I said.

She looked dubious.

"Seriously. I adore Elastigirl (I do). I'd take Elastigirl home with me in a second...though I might have to fight Aide T for the privelege."

She grinned and at that point wondered if perhaps Aide J is angling for a disability leave from us (with pay, of course) so she only has to work the one job but is paid for both.

Welcome to another week!

(However, my writer's block un-blocked. Or, rather, the dam burst. I have about 4 stories almost done and two videos totally vidded in my head. Squee!)


Mz. Cat said...

Maybe Elastigirl can chuck a BIG LINE at her skull so she will need a CAT scan. LOLOL! Look at the humor... what else can we do...

SpooWriter said...

Who needs a big line when you've got masking tape and FINGERNAILS OF DOOM?


Oh, the joy of a good ol' fashioned martyr complex.