I have exciting news today … Zack is a success story!
This is a miracle to me. I fretted that he would never get a job … and he has two! Of course, they are far from full time and his job coach is with him, but he’s still in training and we are hopeful for more hours.
The first job is the Dave’s Killer Bread job I already wrote about. Zack continues to enjoy that position, and Jay reports that the employees at Costco now know both of them by name and are happy to see Zack each day when he arrives for his 1/2 to 1 hour shift. Of course they are happy to see our son — that’s our boy! Mister-I-bring-joy-wherever-I-go Zachary Glyn Griffin.
A Second Job, No Way!
Zack’s second job is at Cristwood Park with CRISTA Ministries. I admit that we had an “in” there because I work in another ministry under the same umbrella, but it’s all about who you know. We are incredibly blessed by Annette, a godly woman with a heart of gold who oversees a staff of nearly 50 young people in the operation of the dining room at this independent senior living facility. She employs two other young men with special needs and was completely open and welcoming to having Zack come on board. Even after Jay and Zack and I met her for dinner and she got to know Zack, and we assured her there was no obligation to hire him, she simply said, “I don’t feel an obligation. I just feel in my heart that Zack is going to be part of our team.”
It’s been about 6 or 7 Mondays now that Zack has gone to Cristwood Park after his shift at Costco and been trained in setting a formal table. They are labeling the silverware and where it goes with numbers so he can match them up. And he is staying on task, diligently working, and seems to really enjoy it!
Adding more activities with a Community Center program
So, Jay was feeling a bit stir crazy being home with Zack all the time … and that’s no surprise. I knew I would feel that way if we hadn’t had our switch of roles with my working full time now and Jay working part time so he can be with Zack during the day. To be honest, I think Zack was feeling a bit stir crazy, too! So, we enrolled Zack in a program called Choices that meets at a community center four days a week, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. He goes on Mondays and Wednesdays, allowing Jay to have much of the day to do whatever he wants. Zack seems very happy to be in the program. It includes music, art, exercise, community outings every day, and other things.
The first day that Jay drove Zack to Choices they weren’t even out of the car before Zack said, “Bye!” Mr. Independent doesn’t want us as close as we want to be! That’s a good thing, right?
Because of his employment, we have been asked to speak twice recently to tell about Zack’s transition from school to work. Let me tell you, I never thought we would be the ones up front telling our story! I’ll let you know about that next time … and I promise it won’t take so long to post that blog.