If you've been reading for a while, you will remember that I had to do a 24 hr log on Harley about a month ago. Wednesday was the inperson meeting to review the document, answer a few questions and have the caseworker phyiscally see Harley.
Well, the previous post I mentioned my mother in law came by--she can never resist bringing junk food..this time it was pop and chocolate donuts. Of course this set Harley to whining as soon as she set it all out on the table...so I let him have a pop and one donut. He was NOT happy that I would only allow him one donut. When he asked me for the 16,549,877,946 time in five minutes and I said no again he threw an empty pop can at me - hitting me in the eye. I don't typically post pictures, no less close ups of myself but this stupid EMPTY pop can cut the edge of my eye and gave me a slight black eye...
The way he was screaming when he threw the can at me you'd think I was beating him! Well, just so happens the caseworker was walking up to the door at the time of the whole incident and she heard what was going on from the street.
Because Harley had hit me like that he was going even more beserk...he kept insisting on going outside and "running away" and I had to keep retrieving him and bringing him back into the house. Finally I got him to go into the backyard rather than trying to take off out the front -- then I heard him open the side gate to leave again...so again he had to be retrieved. She'd been here about 30 minutes before I was actually able to sit down and start the paperwork part of the meeting. I finally managed to get Harley into his room...a few minutes later he comes out with a picture he drew of him slicing "mom" up with a knife. Then he told his hallucinations to "seize her!" and started to talk to them as if they were there. Then he took actions to punch me, but was able to stop himself before he actually made contact..and acted as though he was slicing my throat...then went on and on about how he and Zachary would be leaving and will just destroy the rest of us and they will be happy forever together. It's scary to me, I can only imagine what his caseworker thought, especially considering that this was the first time she had met our family.
We finally get through the 24 hr log and we start discussing services. This is his annual plan writing ceremony...where we decide what services are most apprpropriate and gather evidence. You need to have at least one witness that these types of things happen that is not a relative...and she whole-heartedly and honestly was able to sign as a witness. She was shocked when she learned that this whole 'episode' was over a chocolate donut. I explained that he had had a change in routine this week with no camp and getting ready to start school. The fact that the change in routine created more violence in him was enough evidence to certify that his behavior therapy services should continue. The trashing of the house certified the continued use of housecleaning services. But then it came to discussing respite services...I have yet to find a provider that I trust AND is willing to work with Harley. She reviewed the supports we have which are very limited...we have no family members who are wiling to take Harley or even any of the other kids. So when I suggested that we cut the 17 weeks of respite out of our plan she began to cry...I have NEVER seen a caseworker tear up like this...She absolutely refused to take the respite out of our plan...With the budget cuts though I'd rather not have respite and use the times he's at behavior therapy to do the things we need to do like shopping in the grocery store or the other kids' doctors' appointments...that is one service I would like to see NOT cut ... so if we need to put our plan expenditures back, respite would be the first to go. Second would be the housecleaning service, but cutting respite is at the top of our list since we haven't been able to find a quality provider.
We discussed adding Harley to the waiting list for adult services when he turns 14. That is so close. I am not ready to think about his adult placement yet but I know it's something I need to think about.
All in all I think the meeting went well. She left saying she was completely overwhelmed with everything she had witnessed and discussed so we may need to meet again when Harley is not home to be able to concentrate more. Thankfully I already had all my letters of medical necessity on file and she was able to be a witness so that cut one less piece of paper out of my filing system.
Now I wait for another 2 weeks or so -- unless she decides we must have a follow up meeting -- to learn if our plan is approved as written. It seems as he ages the monetary portions rise...when he was 5 and we wrote our first plan, his budget was only $9,000....With the services we are requesting this year -- which is simply the behavior therapy, summer camp, spring break camp and housecleaning and respite it totals nearly $25,000. They've put a total cap of $32,000 per family per year as part of the new budget cuts...I wonder if he will still even quality since they are making adjustments to the IQ ratings?