This entry originally appeared on my disability blog, I hate stairs.
From coast to coast, kindergarten to college, it’s that time again. That’s right Stair-haters, it’s school time. My brother and I got moved in to our apartments on campus this past Saturday. Classes begin a week from today. I’ll be using this week to get books, set schedules, break in the new attendants, get parking decals, blah blah blah. That’s just side stuff to me. This week is really about getting adjusted to being more independent. The summer spoils me. I get lazy. I don’t have very much responsibility in the summer. I have an attendant who stays from early in the morning to mid-afternoon during the summer. That means I never have to figure out how I am going to do things as simple as eating and using the restroom.
But now I’m “on my own” in a sense. I have a good crew of attendants, but there are strict schedules to plan around, and I have a significant amount of time without an attendant. Spending three hours alone in the morning and five hours alone in the afternoon is a big breath of independence for me—and likely others with similar neurological disorders. No worries though. I have a safety net should something go wrong. Disability Support Services is great at Mississippi State, and I can usually get in touch with one of the six attendants working with me and my brother.
The week before school is a time when the bumps of my complex routine smooth out and become second nature to me. Then I have the physical, mental, and emotional strength to focus on the “normal” (should I say common?) aspects of college life. You know, like classes. And learning.
The week has begun a bit rocky, but the future looks good. Our new attendant will likely have the hang of our little quirks by the end of next week. By that time, the shyness on both sides should be getting better and we will get to know each other. It is a process I go through almost every year. It is a process through which I will always go. I will always need a caregiver. I just hope I keep finding good ones.
So that’s where I’m at right now. I’m looking forward to the school year and it’s affect on this blog. I will be tackling issues that face me and talking to my friends about issues that face them. Should make for some good writings.