I touched a little on it recently, but Alex’s new home’s upper management seem to be significantly more concerned about doing what’s best for Alex than his last home. This is just one of many reasons I’m thinking this year could be the first one where things really start looking up.
In 2010, Alex was placed outside our home. That was probably our worst experience, and he went to places that weren’t able to really help him move forward. Even after the actual crisis placement, the homes were still focusing on keeping him safe more than keeping him happy. (And sometimes they weren’t even doing much to keep him safe) We moved to Albany so we could be closer to Alex, who had been placed temporarily in Salem. Right before Christmas, he was moved to the longer-term home about an hour away from us.
Even when we moved to Eugene, Alex was still a good 30 minutes from us, making daily visits impractical. We kept with the MMJ on our 3x a week visits, but it wasn’t likely often enough for him to really get much out of it. Just before Christmas of 2013, Alex went to KKI for six months, and obviously it wasn’t worth keeping him on the Oregon Medical Marijuana Program. KKI was literally across the country, so cannabis wasn’t an option.
When he came back from KKI, the only available home was in Salem again. So he was over an hour away again from June through most of December of last year.
Just before Christmas, he moved to Eugene. Ten minutes away. I’ve even biked down there in about 15 minutes. This was the first year since 2009 we were able to feel like a family for the holidays. It was absolutely amazing.
Alex is closer to us. Alex is in a home managed and staffed by people who work hard to keep him safe, happy, and engaged.
But as if that weren’t enough, his proximity means we can start looking into MMJ again. And recently dispensaries got legalized here in Oregon, so we’ll have a lot of options for figuring out what works and what doesn’t. Furthermore, recreational pot will be legal in July thanks to a surprisingly decisive vote on measure 91, which will mean a lot less BS trying to make it so both my wife and I can legally transport medicine for him. (For those unaware, there are three spots on a normal MMJ form that allow transportation and possession of cannabis: the patient, the grower, and the caregiver)
Put it all together, and I have to say, I’m very optimistic about Alex’s future for the first time in years.