“To every thing there is a season, and a time for every purpose under heaven.” – Song of Solomon

Transitions have been forefront in my thoughts lately as we begin to plan for the next phase of Nani’s life. The song, “Turn, Turn, Turn” plays in my head constantly.

I hate endings. Can you tell? I know it’s necessary, I know it’s part of life. But did you notice how dark it is inside that tunnel?

Recently, I heard from a someone who played a significant role in a past season. That triggered the memory of the different closures we went through when Nani graduated from school in 2005. This is a journal piece I wrote at that time while trying to sort out my many emotions.

May 2, 2005

There was a closure today.

The first of many to come in the next few weeks. The first of many I have dreaded for years. Mercifully, it came without much warning. A meeting requested in the morning and held in the afternoon.

That’s how I came to sit in Linda Lindamood’s office for 2 hours dissecting and exploring the wonders and weaknesses of Amanda’s communication. Linda is Amanda’s Speech Path at school. She and I are proofing and tweaking Nani’s final report. A report to determine what was accomplished these last 18 years, a report to somehow convey all the nuances that define Amanda’s communication skills. It’s a fun exercise for me.

Linda loves Nani. She has invested heavily in finding a way to help Nani find her voice. Linda and I discuss Nani’s  language from every angle-visual, tactile, signs, gestures, sounds, behaviors. It is clear how well Linda knows my girl. That is so deeply satisfying for me. I feel validated. I feel known.

Someone else sees the treasure deep inside my daughter.

This report will act as a tool for someone unfamiliar with Nani, one of the many people who will follow in the next phase of Nani’s life. We pronounce our editing complete. We are done with the report, then I realize WE are done. Linda and I are done as team members. This woman I have relied on for support and knowledge, this woman who never failed to be Nani’s advocate will not be a part of my life on a regular basis. She always acknowledged the difficulty of my journey as Nani’s mom. She gave me the gift of her admiration and encouragement. She gave me her friendship. She helped my daughter break the communication barrier.

 Linda tells me she remembers the first time we met. Seated at the same table at a seminar, she remembered me sharing wanting Nani to be part of our family. She said she thought that was a great thing to want. Encouraging me to the end, she says, “You did it!” We hug and say good-bye.

The halls are quiet in the late afternoon at Rosedale as I walk out. I cannot believe this season is over. I cannot believe that in a few weeks I will no longer be a parent of this school. I will no longer have a large team of people to call on for help. And I can’t believe that Nani and I won’t have Linda Lindamood.

Turn, turn, turn.


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