Sick but productive...

OK, I got my share of the bug... Getting over it as we speak but still haven't had anything to eat in over 24 hours. Almost 30 hours.

But the good news is that before I got sick sick yesterday I was able to get the TEIS referral for The Younger. The Teacher had coached me on what to say when I asked for the referral. Seeing that The Younger's fine motor skills are that of an 8 year old, she said that just asking for an OT evaluation wouldn't suffice, because he would pass the fine motor skills testing with flying colors. Instead she suggested I use words like desensitizing, and higher than normal anxiety, even using the word "daredevil." One thing that I thought to add on my own was the fact that he picks at his scabs and lips until they bleed. I got a good reaction out of them with that one. My final statement included something like, "His brother has Asperger's so we were told to lay low as he might be learning these behaviors but when I was seeing a different kind of sensory processing in him, and the increase in anxiety, I began to worry." Her immediate reaction was "Yes we can do the referral and you are absolutely doing the right thing."

That made me feel so good. I guess because I wasn't going to be a warrior about this but knew that if he could get into OT it would be great, but that if he didn't, it wouldn't be the end of the world, especially since we have The Super Doc and The Teacher to kind of give us advice along the way, not to mention the experience we have with The Elder. But to have someone else acknowledge that you are doing the right thing for your child and it involves getting him help (state funded help for that matter), it really is a pat on the back. It makes me grateful for not waiting because he will be 3 later this year and would be "too old" for TEIS. So how blessed am I to have people in my life who are bringing this to my attention before I missed the boat?? Thank goodness for people who are teaching me to be a warrior instead of succumbing to complacency. Mandolin Mom taught me a phrase today that I'm excited about using..."Well, this is unacceptable." Scares me a little, but I'll have to put on my big girl panties on one of these days because my boys need me to be a warrior for them. I won't always have The Teacher in my court...

Also yesterday before the major sickies I was able to write this letter:

February 4, 2008

To Whom it May Concern:

This is in response to the letter asking parental feedback regarding the upcoming year. One of the things that pleases me the most about the current program that my child is in, is that not only is he in a structured setting but he is also learning. He has made more progress in the last 4 months than he has with OT and ST alone. At the previous 4 preschools that he attended, the structure was much looser and the agenda was based on the typical children and left no room for dealing with sensory issues, leaving him misunderstood and being asked to leave each program. The program at KES has teachers and aides who not only understand how to handle the autism, but also is firm in what my child needs in order to "survive" kindergarten and dedicated to working with the parents to help in transitions.

My biggest fear for the upcoming year is that my only 3 options would be:
  • Send him to Regular Ed Kindergarten at a very young age (DOB 7/08/03) without any resources.
  • Send him to private PreK, the very same situation as the previous 4 schools who could not handle him.
  • Keep him home which would lack the proper structure he needs to prepare him for Kindergarten.
My suggestion would be having a transition class that is structured just like Kindergarten. He would attend the same hours he would as if he were in Kindergarten, 5 days a week. The only way we know how he will handle the transition of kindergarten is to simulate it as closely as possible. This includes perhaps having a "reverse" inclusion setup where typical children would be in the classroom, but at an even ratio, or 2:1 ratio of Asperger children to typical children. I think doing it this way will ease the transition as my child relates to typical children at a slower pace, rather than bombarding him with 20 typical children at one time AND expecting him to perform his studies. Not only might that cause problems for the teacher staff, but might negatively affect the other children's learning, and negatively affect my son's self-esteem and confidence.

I really hope that this is seriously considered. As of right now, my child does not have an option that is in his best interest. I do not want to lose the progress that you all have worked so hard to make with him during this year. Please feel free to contact me if you need any more clarifications or additional input.


Lastly, I got a solo session with The Super Doc today. It was good. I guess I'll leave it at that. She does a good job of making me feel like I'm not a screw up!

6 Responses to "Sick but productive..."

tulipmom (visit their site)

Hurray for getting the referral! And your letter is outstanding. You're already a warrior!

Hope that bug is all gone SOON!

Elissa - Managing Autism (visit their site)

It's so lovely when you have great people working with you! Well done on the hard work!
.. And take care..

Jen P (visit their site)

Thanks for the kudos. And I do feel human today. Good riddance to that bug!

It really is nice to have people in your court. I am so blessed!

Anonymous (visit their site)

I know for a *fact* that you're already wearing your big girl panties, kiddo! You have been amazing at researching what you need to do for your boys, you've implemented those that were appropriate actions to take (practicing discernment at what probably wouldn't work), you show discipline DAILY at helping your family eat only those foods which will improve your situation (holy cow, how do you do it?), and most importantly, you show love, patience and compassion to your awesome family. You, my dear, are already a Warrior!!! xxxxoooooxxxxoooo

Jen P (visit their site)

Thanks bo-bo!

Marla (visit their site)

Great work for the referral. Glad you are getting over the flu. Seems everyone is getting it.