Monday, 1 August 2011

Lyndylou, I'm glad you're all good - every time I followed the link to your blog it came up with an error page. But you're back, yeah.

Last week was a bit fraught. I applied for Direct Payments which other parents in similar circumstances were using to pay for childcare to give them some respite. At first I was turned down because 'they' were putting together a group of childminders who would provide babysitting at a subsidised rate. All good apart from it wasn't ready yet and they only offered babysitting in the evening. As we needed someone for a Saturday afternoon soon I found a lovely girl who works at Seth's school and has now babysat for Seth a few times. This girl, Chloe, also babysits for another child at Seth's school...and is paid through Direct Payments. So, I appealed the decision. It took a whole month for someone to finally phone me to arrange an initial assessment. After some questioning I discovered that this assessment involves them coming to the house, seeing Seth and talking to me. Then they write to all the various professionals. Then they take it to their management who decides whether we warrant another assessment. If they do, then another assessment takes place which takes around 2 months. What the f##k??!!! So I said, we have to go through all this just to get some babysitting paid for? And she replied that Direct Payments couldn't be used for childcare costs, they should be used for the child to be able to go out and do things. I told her that Seth does get out a lot and it was his father and myself that needed to go out!!! I got a bit riled as I had clearly explained why I was asking for Direct Payments in the first place and at no time had anyone told me it couldn't be used in that way, plus I knew 2 mums who did use it like that and I knew someone who was being paid to babysit with it!!!!!She didn't like me very much after that and kept repeating the same line and being sorry that I had been misled and that she needs to assess to determine Seth and our she's still coming over - in 3 weeks time as she can't fit us in sooner than that. As always seems to happen when I have to deal with the 'professionals' I'm left confused and frustrated!!

On a brighter note we went camping this weekend at a beer and cider festival near Chippenham. There was live music which Seth enjoyed and great cider which Craig & I enjoyed. We all slept better than the previous (and first) attempt at camping, although it still wasn't great because of noisy, rude youths in the tent next to us.
Still, Seth loved his airbed:
From Raising Seth
and chilling out in the sun on his beanbag:
From Raising Seth