Charlotte’s Early Intervention team came today to deliver their annual review. We met with Charlotte’s Occupational Therapist, Speech Therapist and Physical Therapist as well as her coordinator. Her Developmental Therapist faxed his report.
The bottom line is this–were Charlotte to be evaluated today she would not qualify for services. A year ago she was +30% delayed in speech, feeding and gross motor skills. Today she is within normal limits for her age (birth or adjusted) for everything. We’re a bit concerned that her spoken language is not a strong as her comprehension, but the team is not as worried.
So, we’re continuing with a quarterly OT eval, dropping to monthly PT and changing from weekly feeding therapy to bi-weekly speech therapy.
It was a lively and fun meeting. Our team genuinely adores Charlotte–their evaluations refer to her as beautiful, engaging, adorable (well, she is, isn’t she?!)–and they are thrilled with her progress. They also had some lovely things to say about us and the job we’re doing with her. I won’t elaborate because I’m not one to toot my own horn, but I will say that I was proud and quite touched.
We enjoy having these professionals work with Charlotte because Charlotte lights up when she sees any of them. They really are her team, her first friends, and she knows it. As we told Cheryl, Laura, Sara and Elizabeth, our success is theirs because their support, guidance and humor have been essential in getting us through the hardest moments.
We were also reminded tonight of how fortunate we are as Charlotte’s OT spoke. Charlotte has not OT concerns (fine motor and shoulder girdle). Given her reflux and feeding disorder this is, apparently, unusual. The skills that one uses to eat are essential in understanding one’s body in space (sensory issues), fine motor skills, and muscle development. That we’ve avoided any major delays or problems despite the feeding disorder is perhaps pure luck. Something more to be grateful for tonight.
In our moment of gratitude, we pause to think of Phil’s classmate’s son Leo and his battle with an inoperable brain tumor. I invite you all to read a bit of Leo’s story and please keep him and his family in your thoughts an prayers.