School or No School, That was the Question
A very tough question I had to face was whether to send Yasmin to school, regular school of course. It was a lot of exposure and contact, and a lot of chances for blisters, accidents, and contamination. On the other hand, it was necessary for Yasmin to get a healthy social life, important for her psychological upbringing and for her mental growth as well. It was also important for me that she gets her best learning opportunity.
Weighing things on both sides, I came to my conclusion, my philosophy actually. EB should not stop us from enjoying life and living it well, we just have to be careful. To school she would go. My husband was reluctant because of the risks but he also believed that our daughter Yasmin deserved the best chances in life.
Then came the choice of school. After looking through other people’s experiences and reasoning it out with my husband, I came up with the following criteria:
1. The school needs to be close enough to minimize the distance traveled, both on a daily basis and in, God forbid, cases of emergency.
2. Understandably, I need to be accessible for the school to contact me and be available to travel the short distance if I am needed at school.
3. The school administration needs to be informed of the special precautions needed for people with EB and has to accept to take her on.
4. Teachers and people working at the school need to be mature enough and willing to learn about the condition of EB and how to handle Yasmin. God is Most Gracious. The school that two of my sons go to, which is one of the best schools in Cairo, fits the profile and was willing to take her as a student. Yasmin went through the interviews and they really liked her and now she has been there three years. Two of the female workers even acted, literally, as her body guards as she went up or down the stairs.
Yasmin blossomed as she started going to school. It’s true my heart stopped beating from the moment she left to the moment she came back home, but it was worth it. She made friends, she participated in external and internal school activities, and she had birthday parties not just for herself but for her dolls and she invited her friends over. She was accepted and loved by her school mates.
Yasmin was an intelligent child with a smart look , but because of her disease she was absent from school and missing a lot. Her teachers were so understanding to her situation and made her an exception to attend school whenever she finds herself able to come.
At that moment, Yasmin found herself different and decided to quit school . She made a goodbye speech and they made her a farewell party with love.
When the school knew she passed away , they made a memorial event with a very touched speech.
On the day of graduation , the school headmaster send invitations to us to attend the graduation. I was so touched and proud of Yasmin as she was mentioned with short memory video during her stay at school.