Had a good call last night with Fiona and Jane. Fiona is back at school and doing relatively well. She is set to come for a visit on the 26th. Fi and Jane met with a Transition team comprised of many professionals from a wide variety of service organizations to start planning for Fiona's life post-Great School.
I was glad that Fiona was part of the meeting and she seemed to be happy about that as well. She told the people present that she wanted to be placed in our area but also wanted to keep in contact with her family in the Big City and with the friends she has made at the Great School. The Dept of Developmental Disabilities people seemed supportive of her wishes and Jane is great at getting Fiona to put her wants out there to be considered and heard. For instance Fiona would like to be able to have a pet. I think that is HUGE. She loves animals and has a great relationship with ours and with Jane's. I think there is much that animals offer in the way of calming and unconditional love that is of huge benefit. Fiona also wanted to know the procedure for the transition. Jane said the plan would be to have her visit and make sure she liked the place. Then there would be a day visit and probably an overnight and then she would move there. Fiona wanted to know if she could refuse the placement if she didn't like it from the visit and Jane said she really did not know. A lot would depend on if there were other places available but that she should let people know if there were things she did not like because all we could do was try.
Jane has a really fantastic ability to break things down into understandable chunks of info and to make something that is really big seem a lot less scary. Fiona still sounded edgy and a bit worried but definately calmer after the call. I am charged with writing a letter to someone (address and name have not yet been given to me) on why placing Fiona nearer to us is of benefit to her. I am more than ready to do that, and am trying to put out of my mind Jane's words to me that the freedoms that Fiona has had during her years in the Great School are likely to be the most freedom she will have in her life. . . there are miracles. The Great School was one such. Maybe there will be another.