Happy New Year Ruben: 2014
As usual we started the year off with a positive! A trip to Thomas cook to book our summer holidays!! We did have in mind to travel back to Turkey however having spent several hours with the staff we were shown an all inclusive in Egypt which we were advised to go for as it was a good deal, we were unsure but decided that we would give it a go!! So off to Egypt we go in July! Ruben is very excited and enjoyed spending time in Thomas cook where the staff are so friendly and always let Ruben spend time behind their desks where he goes into the role as a travel advisor Lol J.....
Back to school : Ruben reluctantly returns back to school and again the same old issue are still ongoing. We have a constant battle in the mornings to motivate Ruben and it is becoming extremely difficult. Ruben is unhappy within himself and again this has an impact on his learning. We have managed to involve external professionals to support with this issue and this is ongoing.
Great Ormand street visit school to observe Ruben and we return to London for feedback. Ruben undergoes several assessments to try identify any other issues and after several hours it was concluded that Ruben is socially and emotionally delayed due to visual loss however academically 2 years above his age and the test showed that Ruben did show sensory processing difficulties linked to his blindness. The hospital advised that a specialist school for the blind & visual impaired may be the best option for Ruben as his needs were clearly not being met and evidentially this was causing all sorts of problems. This was pretty much the same feedback we were getting all around from the professionals working alongside Ruben whist at home and in school. It seems we have no alternative than to look into getting Ruben a placement in a specialised school that will be able to meet his needs. We feel really angry and upset that things have gotten to this stage and we feel that we have failed Ruben ourselves, however this is a learning curve for us and we felt at the time mainstream with a resource base for the blind and visually impaired was the best option however this really does depend on the schools staffing and attitude and skills and this we believe may not always be possible in a mainstream environment, we felt that it has been a constant battle and all so very negative for so long we can no longer carry on and we need to move Ruben somewhere where he can be happy and strive as we know he can within the right environment.
Ruben has started rock climbing and has picked this up really well, the guides were really impressed and think that he is a natural climber, this is excellent activity for Ruben and he appears to enjoy it. Ruben was very excited to be going to Avoncroft museum with the school which he had a great day out. Ruben continues to go swimming and is more confident in the water.
We visited Worcester College for the blind fun day and got to meet lots of new families and do lots of interesting activities, overall we had a good day and Ruben really enjoyed this day. Ruben told us he would like to be in a school with blind children as he told us he feels left out and he does not like this !! this makes us more determined to get him in the right school ...Ruben has emotional support which he is enjoying and the feedback is really positive Ruben is aware and is dealing with his differences. We manage to visit the specialist school and having spent time within the school and talking with the head and teachers it seems that this school would be the right place for Ruben we only hope we can know get him moved and this is going to have to be a quick process as it would make sense to get him moved for when they return back in September. We will discuss this next month at the review.
June 2014: Review meeting
We attended the review and we have asked for Rubens placement to be looked at and we expressed that we would like for Ruben to attend the specialist school on return after the school holidays. With support from all the professionals we were supported fully with this decision and the ball is in motion.
After a long stressful six months a with lots of meetings phone calls visits to and from schools and hospitals it has been agreed that Ruben will start the specialist school for the blind in September, the school had observed Ruben and felt that they could meet his needs socially and emotionally but felt that his academic needs would be better met in the year above so thankfully the school met with the local authorities to discus as to whether this would be feasible and thankfully they have agreed, it is fantastic that the school have identified Ruben is very bright and we are very happy with this move. We are excited about this but again it is all going to be a massive change for Ruben so also this is going to be nerve racking also for all the family...
Ruben leaves school and seems fine just very excited about his up and coming holiday and starting his new school in September. :)
Ruben was so excited to be going to Egypt on holiday having waited 7 months the time had come. Having tried on several occasions to get Ruben to have his hep b vaccination we failed, Ruben just did not have the capacity to understand why he had to have this and his fear of needles got the best of him unfortunately, thankfully this was only advise and not compulsory! Again Ruben was excited about the flight which went well. We arrived in to a sunny and very hot dry climate, Ruben was excited to explore the apartment and was very happy that we were located right next to the swimming pool called the aqua wing. Within no time he was in the water having fun in the sun and making lots of friends. We spent several days on the beautiful beaches some which were not so good for Ruben however Theo loved them as he was able too explore the coral reefs and experience all the under world and the exotic fish! meanwhile whils Theo and Mom done scuba diving Ruben enjoyed relaxing around the water park with his Dad where he made lots of new friends. We went out to Namma Bay and trailed around the markets where we got ripped off on several occasions which Ruben was not impressed with , Ruben got to a stage where he was telling any one who tried to sell us anything that we were just not interested !!Lol we were all talked into riding a Camel which was not at all a nice experience at all and i dont think either one of us will ever board one agian!! We were all inclusive so spent most time around the hotel making the most of the ammenities. In no time Ruben had mapped the hotel and was independently getting around. We had a relaxing holiday and met some great new friends from Warwick Nicola Nathan and Chole with their crazy Aunt Kim. We met a family from Wales Cerian Michael and their children. A family from Bolton Natalie, and a family from Manchester, they were all lovely People which we hope to stay in touch with. Overall we had a great holiday ...
September 2014- Ruben starts his first day at new school
Ruben was so excited to saythe least he was up at the crack of dawn 6am to get washed dressed and breakfast and was happily sat waiting to hear the horn of his Taxi. I think i was more nervous than Ruben! off he went in his Taxi in which was shared with older students who were very freindly and welcomed Ruben on entering the Taxi, the guide was also very friendly and assured me that she would call me when they arrived to school which is what she done. Ruben, teachers called me to give me an update on how Ruben got on with his first day and all was very positive :) Ruben was very happy on return and was looking forward to returning back the following day!!
Ruben is really enjoying his new school he is a lot happier and seems a lot more relaxed in himself, he never moans about getting up or going to school and every day has been enjoyable, he says he dont feel like he is at school, he enjoys the teaching and he seems to be making freinds and is alreday learninbg grade 2 braille, which is such a positive move for him. The tecahers call from time to time and give me updates whether this is positve or negative but they seem very happy with how well ruben has settled and how well he is picking up grade 2 braille, they say if he continues at this pace he will soon be having a braille note ! this would motivate Rubens learning so much and open up a new world of technology for Ruben to explore...watch this space....
November- Parents Evening
What a difference a school makes!! I was apprehensive i guess due to previous experiences but was made to feel really welcome it was very relaxed and all the feedback was overall very positve in all aspects even down to his mobilty sessions which he is also making imporvements. We were also given some video footage of Ruben playing along side his peers of which was really nice to see as it showed us that he is making freinds and is very happy and content. I left feeling very happy and a feeling of excitement for Rubens future now he is settled...
December- Axel gets his new puppie Axel
It has been 12 weeks since Claire,s dog Rosie gave birth tooo 5 puppies of whch we have been oing around and visiting form day dot! Theo and Ruben wanted a male dog and chose Axel. We went out shopping for bedding & feed and toys and Ruben and I went to collect him to bring him to his new home, Ruben is exstatic!!
December 2014 - Christmas
Up to the lead for Christmas Ruben has had lots of day trips to snowdome, donkey sancuary and Christmas parties both in school and at home, Ruben was very excited for christmas and wrote a wish list to santa of which consisited of an remote areoplane!! Christamd day Ruben was very excited and enjoyed opening his presents some of his favourite being an Airport, I Pod, remote cars and areoplane, Ruben enoyed having over Nanny Graham & Grandad Graham for Christmas dinner and had a very busy day eating lot,s and playing with his new toys...
Axel the puppiy s settling in and Ruben seems reluctant to stroke him as Axel is teething so wants to bite on everything including hands!! hopefully this will all settle down and Ruben will be able to enjoy more close contact of whch he is wanting, this is really building his confidence with animals and it is apparent as Ruben is showing more interest in Anya the cat who does not bite and for the first time he actually strokes her and interacts more which is great :) Happy Days!!!
Happy New Year and Happy Birthday Theo who became a teenager today!!
Theo spent the day playing footy whilst Ruben enjoyed some time chilling with Nan & Grandad!! We had some freinds pop round to bring in the new year with us which was really nice Joanne & Neil came with Charlie, Tom and Laura Ruben liked this and enjoyed playing & Dancing with them, Zoe & Roy & cade passed by, Tom & Pete and \Tom popped in, Lisa Cain and Sean, Claire and we had a great night bringing in the new year with a crazy Dance off leading up to the countdown... Happy New year xx