It has been a bit of a funky summer for the little guy. He spent five weeks at his school and three weeks at camp (plus, he went to camp every Friday). Hard to tell how he felt about that schedule, or the summer in general.
One clue came last Friday, when Clay and his fellow campers were putting on a play at a local elementary school for the parents, something the camp does at the end of every summer. I was running late, and immediately bumped into Clay and his counselor, Emily, in the lobby as they walked laps around the school, waiting for Clay’s turn in the spotlight.
Last summer, on a day when Clay was not feeling well, Emily sent us an email about how the little guy had cemented her career choice in special education. So, it was great to find out Emily was working with him again this summer, and she was clearly happy to be assigned to Clay.
Clay’s part in the play was to be on stage singing and dancing with his group to the Beatle’s song “Yellow Submarine”. While we waited, we saw him pass by in the hallway, Emily in tow, about 100 times.
Finally, he was up on stage.
Afterwards, Emily handed us a CD filled with photos from Clay’s time at camp this year. Clue number two.
Judging from the smiles and body language, he seems to be doing pretty well.
On Clay’s last day, he brought home a long note from Emily.
“I had such an amazing time working with Clay this summer, it was a wonderful experience to be with him again,” she wrote. “His hugs throughout the day really made me smile.”
Clue number three. Seems like a pretty good summer.
Finally, my wife sat Clay down with the keyboard he uses to communicate to hear it from the horse’s mouth.
“What did you think of camp this year?”
“We see the animals” (The camp has a petting zoo, and one of Clay’s chores is to help feed and water the animals.)
“What are your favorites?”
“The sheep and goats”
“Why are they your favorites?”
“Because they are so beautiful”
“What makes them so beautiful?”
“They are so gentle to touch”
“Do you communicate with them?”
“What do you say?”
“We are happy to be with you”
Definitely a good summer.