I received a call today from the Regional Center. Blossom has been found to have "intellectual deficiency" which, the man explained, is the new term for mental retardation. I am not offended by the word retarded. In music, retard, is a term that means to slow down. Here is the dictionary definition of retardation:
a. The act or process of delaying or impeding.
b. The condition of being delayed or impeded.
2. The extent to which something is held back or delayed.
3. Something that retards; a delay or hindrance.
4. Often Offensive: Impaired intellectual development.
5. Music A diminishing of tempo; a retard.
She definitely has a condition of being delayed AND impeded. Being a client of the Regional Center means that she will have life-long help as long as she needs it. No one is putting any limits on her potential and the programs are designed to help her reach her greatest potential. She will be supported in adulthood by programs that will help her be as independent as possible while contributing and participating as fully as she can in normal, everyday life, safely.
I will be at her side throughout this journey since all programs have cracks and need monitoring by someone who loves her and has her best interests at heart regardless of politics and budgets. As my neighbor pointed out to me, who has several adopted children with special needs, if anything happens to me, Blossom will be taken care of for life.
Meanwhile, she is registered for school and will start next week in special ed, beginning with Functional Skills, some of which will be easy for her and some not easy at all. She'll also be in a reading class. Where the school leaves off academically, I'll pick up at home so she can continue to progress in math and other subjects, especially those she finds interesting, such as geography.
Public school is a HUGE step for her since most of her PTSD has to do with school in China. When I first got her, she didn't last more than 2 minutes at our school table before having a meltdown and ending up writhing and kicking and screaming on the floor in utter panic. School in China had been too brutal, physically and psychologically for her. I will always remember the day, weeks later, when she finally accepted that school at home with me was completely different than school in China and she finally allowed herself to focus and understand her school assignment and start working on it, knowing I was there to help her and she said, "Mommy, thank you for helping me learn."