Thursday, June 7, 2007

"Early Intervention"

Joshua received a visit this morning from a speech therapist and a physical therapist who work with the state's Early Intervention program. Our pediatrician recommended us to the program because of Joshua's delay in walking and speaking. They came to our home to evaluate Joshua's development level and his eligibility for the program.

At the end of two playful hours, they sat down and went over the results with us. Joshua does qualify for early intervention. He is lagging most significantly in his communication skills, especially speech. He is also behind in his gross motor skills, like walking, and in his fine motor skills, mostly related to his eating.

The first recommendation was to give Joshua a complete nutritional evaluation, including a visit with a gastrointestinal doctor, to determine if there may be a problem. They physical therapist noticed several factors that normally point to a G.I. issue. We will need to receive a referral from the pediatrician for this appointment (our next appointment is in two weeks).

In two weeks, we will meet with a service coordinator from Early Intervention to devise a six month strategy for Joshua (and to discuss all the financials). The standard plan includes a therapist coming to the home once a week, working with Joshua and teaching Darren and I howo to help Joshua during the week.

Overall, the evaluation went well, but I was a little discouraged that Joshua has fallen so far behind in so many areas. I am just thankful that we will receive the support to learn how to help him.

4 comments:

  1. Hi Darren and Christy. I have worked extensively with Early Intervention here in Illinois. One of my two jobs right now is providing social work services to families whose kids are getting Early Intervention services.

    The one thing I've learned is that all of the therapies that are provided really do help a great deal and all kids (unless there is a true disability) improve over time.

    The therapists can be very helpful and can show you what you can do every day to stimulate the growth needed so that Joshua can catch up quicker.

    Try not to blame yourselves or somehow think that you are bad parents or anything. All kids develop at their own rate and sometimes need help to catch up to where they should be. Feel free to call or email if you need to chat, Christy. I'd love to catch up with you anyway.

    Love, Amy Tanner

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  2. Christy,

    We'll be keeping Joshua in our prayers. Glad that you are able to get some help with him. Don't get discouraged!

    Love,
    Sarah Simmons

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  3. Christy,

    We will be keeping you and Joshua in our prayers. Don't get discouraged! I'm glad that you're able to get help with him.

    Love,
    Sarah Simmons

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  4. I know a number of kids who have "fallen behind" when they were young, and when caught and dealt with (like you guys are doing) everything worked out OK.

    My best friend in St Louis was concerned about her son's lack of speech long before any of the doctors would listen (he's a boy, and the second child, all reasons he would be slightly delayed compared to their daughter). Finally when he was old enough she pushed having him examined and they found he DID have significant speech delay, and it was because he had hearing loss (glue ear etc)! No wonder he hadn't learn to speak properly, he wasn't hearing what people were saying! I'm delighted to report that a set of ear tubes and 6 months of speech therapy later he's back on track with all the other kids.

    Whatever is going on with Joshua I know you and Darren are wonderful parents and people, and I have faith in you both! Not that it's much help coming all the way from New Zealand, but if I can help in any way at all, just holler :-)

    Sarah (kiwigater)

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