Speech Therapy for Owen

Another reason Im so behind...

Life I tell ya...

So I've been bring up Owens lack of speech at EVERY SINGLE dr appoint since he was about 15 months. I realize at that age it was still considered normal to not be talking much, but he wasn't talking really at all. He had some words but refused to use them. It was a fight to get him to say anything ever. Hi was the most common word. I finally got him to start signing a little. Words he could say but wouldn't and words he had never even tried. He said several words then dropped them (like dog). The pediatrician told me that they won't even consider him till he is 2 years old unless he has another delay. After a hearing check that was completely normal there was nothing more to do but wait till he was 2. 

Fast forward to his 2 year appointment. I stress again that he still is NOT talking, not even trying. He can hear just fine, follows directions, makes noises but doesn't babble really at all. Screams, points, grunts, and that it. So we get a referral. Owen turned 2 at the end of March, we don't get in for a speech eval until early June. In these couple months Owen is really showing an effort to try and talk. He's picked up a couple more words and phrases and actually using them. I am beyond excited to see him trying. His only delay he showed was in expressive speech. Through this private place he was approved for 2x a week. Awesome. It goes through insurance and seems to be covered. He did great at the evaluation and I really liked the lady. We decided to start for two weeks (4 sessions) before our 3 week trip to Michigan. 

So day 1 (June 6) we go. I expect they will slightly ease him into it. Nope. I really liked the therapist at the evaluation but this day she comes to the waiting room, picks him up, and takes him back. Now had she even bothered to ask she would have quickly been told he doesn't let ANYONE even people he's used to pick him up. The kid is nervous. So of course he cried bloody murder the entire 30 minute session. I was in the waiting room crying myself. I wanted so bad to go back and sit with him. I couldn't believe this was the best way. He has no clue what is happening. When he came out he was hyperventilating and refused to look at her. We left with another appt two days later. 

Day 2 I walk back with him. They decided to do his class with another child his age. This way he can see whats supposed to happen. The therapist said he did better but I could still hear he was crying. It wasn't the same clueless terrified cry from the first day. Since she saw how well he did in the evaluation she suggested letting Leiland come back with him the next week. So thats the plan.

Day 3 Leiland goes back. Owens still not thrilled and kept trying to leave the room. But he's not crying the whole time. Yes some but not nearly as bad. He wouldn't participate but was watching avoiding all eye contact with the therapist. 

Day 4 - last one before our 3 week vacation. Leiland goes back again. Owen wasn't happy when I snuck out, but he didn't cry. He even participated in the interaction and activities. So its progress. Now we are going to be gone for 3 weeks and have to have a new therapist when we get back because she is going on maternity leave. 

In the meantime I am torn. I was upset that the peditrician sent us to this place because it requires we drive into town 2x a week for a 30 minute appointment. Not going to be the easiest once this baby comes. Plus I can't go with him and learn how to help him. SO I call the Tennessee Early Intervention. I had already called back in April once he was 2 and never heard back. This time they got back the next day and scheduled an appointment. Now the issue was that it all had to be done in 45 days and my trip to Michigan was going to put a big delay on things. So we waited till back from Michigan and started again doing the paperwork with them. 

I filled out the paperwork and scheduled the evaluation. I had Leiland go play his iPad upstairs while Owen did the eval. He was mostly cooperative and enjoyed playing the games with her. It was rather cute. He answered great too. I had heard from some others that went through them that their child was denied because they only had one delay - the worry they had referring him before 2. By the end she told me the bad news. His only area of delay was his speech and his adaptive and another section were good. She said she would input the numbers and make sure she didn't accidentally put it in wrong but most likely he wasn't qualified. Sad news for me. I was so hopeful. But he could continue at the one in town even if it was inconvenient for me. 

So then on July 29th I got a great call. The woman called because she was looking over his scores again. He basically scored a 79 in one area and the cutoff is 78. So she reviewed her notes about how I described everything and adjusted scores just slightly to qualify him. He has to be showing a 25% deficit I believe she said in at least 2 area to qualify. His speech was more than a 25% deficit but this other section is where he was right on the border. 

So in the next week someone else will call to schedule the next step. They will start by coming once a week and if after a few months if we aren't seeing improvement then they discuss doing more frequent. For me this is absolutely perfect. At least this way I can watch and learn how to help him. He will be in the comfort of his own home. 

I really hope this is enough to help this boy talk. He gets so frustrated and you can tell he has SO much to say. He's at least trying now so I am hopeful he will respond. You can tell he loves saying a word you know because you understand what he's saying. I can't wait to hear all it is he has to say. 


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