Temple Grandin thinks in pictures. So do I.
When I decided to do a post about how it felt to file a lawsuit against my son’s school system, instantly, the image of The Scream filled my head. It has been said that Edvard Munch’s The Scream is one of the most significant pieces of art in history because it so clearly captures the universal human experience of being stretched to the limit.
It did for me.
So, for the sake of clarity, and brevity, to explain succinctly how I felt during the two years that led up to and resulted in a lawsuit, I use images of Munch’s work and just a few accompanying words to express emotions that everyone, at some point in their life, feels.
My art is really a voluntary confession and an attempt to explain to myself my relationship with life—it is, therefore, actually a sort of egoism, but I am constantly hoping that through this I can help others achieve clarity. Edvard Munch
September 1998 – March 2000
During Teddy’s 1st and 3rd grade years (he skipped 2nd) I was almost constantly at odds with the school system. I felt like I was working with zombie teachers and administrators all coming at me with a mindless and constant chorus of…
“He is just going to have to learn,” and ”We don’t do that.”
My asking these people for help, for understanding of my child’s needs, of the challenges he faced trying to learn to manage life with Aspergers went unheard.
I felt mute. I felt crazy. I felt impotent.
And I wanted desperately to get away from these people.
When I withdrew Teddy from school during his first grade year, even though all that had happened in the previous four months led to this point, and I myself had been wanting it, I felt like I had left everything behind. We were on our own. I had left land, the solid ground and was in the middle of a bridge, an abyss, neither here nor there, just in the middle of no where.
The day we filed the papers for Teddy v. County Board of Education, even though I was still on the bridge, still neither here nor there, and Teddy was still in danger, I felt like the lawsuit was my scream, YOU HAVE TO HEAR ME NOW and that Teddy would finally get the help we had been asking for the past 18 months.images from edvard-munch.com
Next: The paper stream of a lawsuit.