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Aran's Long Good-Bye

Aran is leaving.

Registration for Michigan Career and Technical Institute starts this Monday.  It's two and a half hours away, so we're leaving Sunday, spending the night in nearby Kalamazoo, and driving the rest of the way so we can arrive at 9:00 AM.  I'm trying not to freak out.

This is a natural event, but it's still fraught with more than the usual kid-is-flying-the-nest drama for me.  Yes, of course it's because he's autistic.  How well will he handle living so far away from home, in a new environment, where he's unfamiliar with . . . well, everything?  How will he handle room mate conflicts?  His classes?  Getting to town?  (MCTI is 20 minutes from Plainwell, the closest town, and the Institute runs a shuttle bus.)  Will he be lonely?  How will he handle that?

My biggest fear is that he'll get embroiled in some problem or mistake and be unable to extricate himself.  I won't be there to help.  Yes, he can call, but I'm not always available by phone.

Anyway.  Today we rounded up odds and ends he still needed--sheets, a storage locker, a throw rug, a bath mat, a pile of snacks.  We already bought a little fridge and microwave.  If his room mate (we have no way to find out who it'll be) brings them as well, we'll just return the extras.

Packing begins on Saturday.


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