Having a child with special needs is not easy. There are always people with no formal training like friends and family members trying to diagnose your child with some kind of condition or trying to give you advice on what help they think your child needs. People like this – for lack of better words – annoy the crap out of me.
You’ll usually run into these kinds of people:
1) People who “know someone” with something that they think your child also has. Because, you know – there obviously aren’t an array of delays out there. Everyone has the same thing.
2) People who think that if your child can’t perform a certain task, they must not be smart.
You wouldn’t believe the number of people who told us Wyatt had Autism, that he wasn’t getting the help he needs, that he wasn’t making improvements. Or people who told us there must be something else wrong with Levi, because his foot was clubbed, that there had to be something else wrong too.
Sometimes it’s hard to ignore these things and focus on the plan that you have laid out ahead of you. And yeah, it’s always good to get opinions – when they’re wanted. But it’s just hard. It’s hard when you’re trying to do your best for your child and others are knocking you down for the very things you’re working so hard to do!
It’s so important to have a good team behind you. We are beyond blessed when it comes to this. Wyatt’s teachers are some of the most amazing, genuine, hard-working people that I’ve ever met. This isn’t just a job for these women, it’s a huge part of their lives. Each week when they come to our home or we see them at school they pour themselves into each child – helping and encouraging them the whole way. It takes a very special person to work with little ones, especially little ones with special needs. And that’s exactly what these ladies are, special. Having an awesome team and a plan was key for everything that we’ve done with Wyatt and Levi so far (Levi’s team is amazing too!). It’s important to get everyone in your child’s life on the same page so they know what the plan is, what they can do to help, etc. This has helped a lot for us!
Today is actually a very happy time for us. Levi’s doctor thinks his foot looks amazing and that he is healing up beautifully. And today I had a meeting with one of Wyatt’s teachers to discuss his future and to go over the progress he has made this year. A year ago he was evaluated in several different categories and throughout the school year his teachers have been marking his progress. I was shocked to see how much Wyatt has changed from when he first began with his program one year ago.
For one year Wyatt has had school once a week ( I go with him ) for a little over an hour where he works with teachers and his classmates, he also has had one home visit per week where a teacher would come to work with him in his own environment. So, this is two days a week of help. He also has additional things like field trips that we take him to when we can.
Some of his scores when compared to last year have dearly doubled! Yeah, DOUBLED. This let’s us know that we are doing the right thing, that we have the right team of people around us, and that there is improvement being made! It’s amazing the difference that one year can make. And when September hits Wyatt will be starting a Special Education Pre-school program! He’ll go 4 days a week for a few hours a day. A small part of me is so nervous for this change, but the other 99% of me is excited because I just can’t wait to see how much he learns.
A year ago Wyatt wouldn’t look people in the eye, he barely spoke, and he didn’t enjoy the company of strangers. Now he will look you directly in the eye, he is able to communicate small things with me, he helps do small things around the house like put the clothes from the washer into the dryer, put his milk away and close the fridge, brushes his teeth, and more. Levi is rolling over, almost sitting up on his own, and meeting all of the requirements for his age!
A year ago I was discouraged and wasn’t sure if Wyatt would ever do these things, and I wasn’t sure what Levi’s future would be like.
But now, I know.
Just goes to show that YOU know what is best for YOUR child.
Not anyone else.
Trust in yourself. Trust in your child. Consult experts, and if needed – consult again.
You CAN do this!