I've been wanting to post photos of what I've painted so far -- Olivia's room is done! -- and ask opinions on more painting to come, but it's just going to have to wait a little bit longer while I get through one day at a time over here.
We finally met for Sean-Peter's IEP (Individualized Education Program) appointment yesterday, our second attempt as this pesky winter keeps giving the schools snow days around here. No surprises, really: an IEP just gets everything you've already talked about written down official-like so that services can start. Right now he's scheduled to start preschool tomorrow; it was going to be today but I already had him and Olivia scheduled for dental appointments this morning. Except Sean-Peter ended up not going to that, either, on account of some croupiness he decided to come down with last night. It's snowing like the dickens right now and isn't supposed to let up anytime soon, so time will tell if he actually starts tomorrow or not, croupiness or no.
Did I mention that Olivia has two cavities? Two cavities. Conner and I had our own check-ups last week and came away with one cavity a piece. I can't remember the last time I had a cavity. This is Conner's first. Me thinks our teeth didn't like Italy too much.
But two! And one of them is pretty deep: he's hoping he can just fill it and not have to put on a cap. Poor little thing. And there goes our budget. Every month there has to be something that comes up: February was heating issues; I guess March it's dental, as these things are not completely covered by insurance like they were when we were overseas. Then again, it kind of seems like we got what we paid for...
I'm still trying to wrap my mind around all the facets involved with Sean-Peter and his speech issues. My only real concern going into the IEP, barring any surprises, was that apraxia at least be mentioned as a possibility. Really, we just need to get him started with some therapy -- which is needed to identify things like apraxia to begin with. But having it down in writing that "apraxia has not been ruled out" may make a difference now in what he qualifies for insurance-wise when I go back to get more referrals for off-base care during the summer season. And if he is ultimately "diagnosed" as being apraxic, everything I've read recommends at least three to five therapy sessions per week for children with verbal apraxia. The pathologist at the preschool confirmed this. But while he will receive one-one-one therapy sessions with the pathologist at the preschool, the majority of his time will be spent in the classroom setting. This may not suffice if he truly is apraxic.
After we were talking and I raised the concern of this phrase "apraxia has not been ruled out" as making a difference in how much care our insurance might cover, one of the providers pointed out that this was covered in the assessment we had done at Therapy Connections, the private company that conducted his first speech evaluation and the one the school district had piggy-backed on to save time and resources. And it occurred to me that I had never actually seen the report from that evaluation. I had spoken with the pathologist on the phone about it, but she had sent it directly to the school district, per my request, and I had never asked for a copy for myself. Why hadn't I? I could almost hear them ask the question, and frankly, I was asking it, too.
Seeing the report and the raw numbers that describe my son was shocking. His Auditory Comprehension was at an age equivalent of 2 yrs and 4 mths. He had just turned three at the time. His Expressive Communication was equivalent to that of a child 1 yr. and 7 months old.
I am certain that he has made strides since then, however small. And, of course, there is the idea that they are determining these numbers based on one hour of time with my son. But it was still so disheartening to see it all spelled out. I have been preparing myself for this long road we have ahead of us, but seeing it written down felt like I was viewing the map for the first time, and that road runs right off of it.
I still have so many unanswered questions and phrases running through my head. Sensory processing... does that relate to his picky eating habits and his apparent texture phobia? And why doesn't that ever come up in discussions about my son? I am understanding more and more how these things are all interrelated, and it doesn't seem to make sense to treat them in isolation of the other. Yet no one I've talked to about it thus far acts like his picky eating has anything to do with his language ability, or that the two even belong in the same conversation. I'm not even sure why I think they do, or what you're supposed to do about it if they are, but for some reason I think it matters.
I recently learned of a local playgroup organized by a mom with an apraxic child. This is just one of many avenues out there available in this city to learn more about this invisible thing that seems to have gripped my son. It can get overwhelming, but right now I think we're doing the important thing of just getting started and keeping the discussion open with professionals and parents alike. I'm still waiting for that one person to listen to my son jabber on in that unintelligible way of his and say, "Oh, yea, I knew someone who was just like that ..." and I'll be on the edge of my seat waiting to find out what happened next. In the meantime, I guess we'll keep trying to finish that sentence on our own.
March 30, 2012
5 years ago