Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Every Day is Mother's Day

It's Mother's Day again, and while I am grateful every day for my gift of Little A, our family life is not without its challenges.

Just last week, due to a onset of increased behavioural issues (hitting teachers, and occasionally classmates), Little A has been removed from his regular integrated classroom and placed in an IEP room by himself (with a teacher, of course). 

The findings so far are that the lack of other distractions has given Little A better focus on his work, longer consistent working times, and a gradual decrease in behavioural issues due to the absence of previous triggers.

He had just completed a complete psychoeducational assessment in April, and while we haven't yet received the detailed written report, we did have a team discussion, and the issues that arose were his sometimes aggressive behaviour, and the possibility that he might also have ADHD. 

His doctor hopes that the school's 6 month behaviour plan results in enough of an improvement that we can rule out the use of medication for now. Doctor is hesitant to medicate mainly because Little A is underweight, despite the enormous quantities of food he consumes daily. I am apprehensive becuase what parent wants their child medicated for the rest of his life? 

He has many schoolmates and therapy classmates who are on medication and have noted significant improvements in behaviour, focus, etc. But I still hold out for self regulated behavioural management, at least until science convinces us that there really is a chemical cocktail that will significantly improve his quality of life. 

And so the struggle continues. No family is without challenges, I am well aware, but for those who are faced with bigger obstacles, there are also more fulfilling rewards. We certainly see these with every small achievement. And so we soldier on.

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Artist at Work

In the last six or so months, Little A has been drawing and writing a lot. This is a major thing for a child with delayed fine motor skills and motor planning issues. For years, his pencils, crayons, markers, and other drawing and colouring implements (apart from paints) lay unused in a couple of drawers.

Then came the day he came across two boys on YouTube who had drawn and illustrated their own basic picture books. After watching the videos hundreds of times, I encouraged him to make his own "books," and showed him he had all the tools needed to do that.

Since then, we have stopped visiting toy stores and started frequenting stationery shops. Instead of an iDevice at the table, Little A now wields paper and coloured pens. Suddenly he could stay seated in restaurants for the length of time it took us (and not just him) to eat a meal.

More than that, his fine motor skills have come along, as well as his creativity. I do hope this art hobby continues and develops into a lifelong one. Who knows, one day Big A and I may find that we have raised the next Van Gogh?!