I’ve been hesitant to share this but I feel the time is finally right. A while back, I filed a discrimination case against the school with The Office of Civil Rights. The school absolutely refused to meet my sons accommodations and after begging and pleading for several years, I realized I had no other option than to go this route. I really thought foolishly that teachers and administrators would bend over backwards to help kids anyway they could. I couldn’t have been more wrong. Just like those NFL players, I took my place in front of them week after week trying to be heard. I tried negotiating, begging, bargaining and anything else I could think of to get him the resources he needed. They pushed back hard. The principal tried to threaten and intimidate me to make me go away. Chase started to see repercussions in a particular class and I had to pull him out and place him with another teacher. Our family was falling apart. I kept fighting because like any mother, I would do anything to get my son the help he needed. I was placed on depression medication and had panic attacks where I couldn’t breathe. The situation was killing me but it wasn’t right to let them get away with this and I never wanted a single kid or family to go through what we had to endure. It was the worst time in my entire life. I was interviewed by OCRs lawyer and told I would hear from them. I did 16 months later.
In the meantime, my son switched over to high school and slowly but surely life was getting back to normal. There was a day I assumed OCR would never get back to me and I came to the realization that if I remained obsessed with that debilitating experience, I would allow those teachers and that horrible administrator to lock me in that hell that I didn’t want to live in anymore. It was ruining my life. My noble notion to do something good for future kids along with my need to see these horrible people pay a price was killing me slowly one day at a time. Guess what! No one cares. No one came to rescue me as I was drowning in a pain I never should have owned. The only choice I had was to let it go. By holding onto my obsession to hold these people rightly accountable, I was losing precious days of finding joy and living my life.
I received a letter from OCR two weeks ago (now 18 months) stating that because the allotted time expired since filing my complaint, my case was being closed and no investigation would take place. Was this fair that due to them dragging their feet to get around to my case that I was being punished? You bet your ass it isn’t but guess what? That’s the way it is and crying and dwelling on it will not change the circumstances anyway. I never had a chance because when there is no enforcement of codes and rules and laws, people can do whatever they want. The wrong people are being protected and like it or not that’s just the way it is.
I’m happy to report I am off my medication and feel happy and grateful most of the time. Chase is doing fantastic in school and I think our lives are no longer controlled by the school system.
Life isn’t fair. Period. This chapter is closed and this story is over. It feels so good to put it behind me and really move on. Put down what is too heavy for you to carry. Stop choosing to be a victim of your circumstances. Stop thinking people should care about your problems. Stop trying to punish those who cause you pain. Stop thinking the world owes you a favor or you are entitled to a better outcome. Be your own hero and do everything you can to fix whatever you can and leave the rest behind. Move on, be grateful and focus on what is good in your life. Only then will you truly be free.