Thursday, August 20, 2009

Therapy and Decisions

{I know I am way behind on blogs and will update all of that soon, I promise!}

The triplets had therapy this morning. They are still getting development and speech therapy monthly. They are to get each one for ninety minutes per month, but we have found for scheduling purposes it works much better to do all three together and do both therapists on the same day.

I knew that some of the things Julie, our developmental therapist and lead person, was going to be bringing up but today it was very in depth and detailed, so I am just a little overwhelmed with it all.

Ethan is doing fabulous, when he's alone and comfortable. He chatters and even is starting to use some 2-3 word sentences (this week's big one for all three: where aidi??) and he speaks the most clearly. He's very up to trying to say anything you want him to and usually does a great job.

Noah still jabbers on and on the most, but speaks the least understandably. He talks non-stop, but he drops the ends off words, mumbles, stutters, and has a bit of a lisp. But he does love to tell a story. He also loves to sing! He is also putting some 2-3 word sentences together. Noah does the best on names and loves saying everyone's names and uses them the most often.

Nathanial is the slowest to do it, but is still doing incredibly well. He tells me whole sentences, but you can only understand, at best, half of what is said. He also repeats any word you tell him and does a great job with that. He also has a lisp.

All three are definitely, speech-wise, getting there. They are way behind their same-age peers, but I am very happy with the progress we are seeing.

We are having some major issues still with biting, and now pinching. And the pinching is not's vicious and they leave horrible marks when they do it. Ethan and Nathanial (especially Thano) tend to do the most pinching, but Noah does his fair share also. Noah tends to hit more often when he's upset.

Lately, we've been noticing a lot of autistic-tendencies in Nathanial. I don't even really know if they are autistic tendencies, but there is something very different about Nathanial than the other two. I am convinced at this point he is either autistic or has ADD. As he gets older, it is becoming more and more obvious whereas the other two seem to be mellowing a bit with age. I brought my concerns up to Dr. B at their well baby visit this week (I'll update about that in a different post later), but he seemed to think that we could hold off for a bit and just watch him. His logic is that he is already in therapy, uses a pretty strict schedule, and not a lot would be gained by trying to get him diagnosed with something right now. At first, I was OK with that, but the more Steve and I discussed it the more we thought as long as we have people in place and resources at our disposal, why not use it? So I brought up everything he's been doing to Julie and she agrees it warrants a closer look. She also observed several of the behaviors I was describing in the short amount of time she was here. She wants to bring in the school psychologist who has observed them before again, this time at home during a therapy session, to specifically focus on Nathanial. I am relieved to know we are taking this step now because if he is autistic, then we can start more intense therapy with him immediately. She will observe him at the next visit and then recommend to us if she thinks we should take it a step further or wait.

The other thing that was brought up, which I knew was coming, was preschool. They are "almost three" and will age out of this level of therapy at three. She says at this point, she can guarantee that they are not ready to be done and will all be on an IEP. Which means we need to be making some big decisions in the next little while about what our next step should be. Julie wants them in preschool as soon as they turn three for several reasons. I do not. I did not, ideally, want them to start preschool until they were 4 1/2, but I did know that would probably not really happen. I also wanted them to go to preschool where everyone else has gone. That is now looking more and more like it will not happen at all. We can, of course, object and say no to her recommendations, but honestly, they would be better off in the preschool she is suggesting. She wants them in 4 half days per week and then move to 4-5 whole days per week at 4 1/2. The preschool she wants them in has a special education classroom with a special education teacher. The more that I am praying on this, it seems this is where they really need to be and where they could most flourish. My one problem with it has been that it is not in the same district or town that we are in. And that would mean they would go to kindergarten not knowing a single classmate. Then I realized that Aidan only knows a few of his classmates this year because most of his class went to morning preschool and he went to afternoon. I do feel better once I thought it all through from that angle.

Steve and I will have big decisions to make in the next few months for all of the boys...will you pray with us that we follow God's direction and His will makes it clear which way to go?

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