Or as official as it can currently get anyway. How many details do you want?? I’ll do a long version.
We left the house early because we were sent a note to expect extra delays for a race. We however, had no delays. We arrived almost an hour early. BUT we were still seen, with our Occupational Therapist within a half hour. Upon arriving there was a check-in where grown-ups received visitor wristbands, and Blu got a special “Our Little Visitor” sticker for his shirt. The special care paid to families, and children, and their safety were phenomenal! If you ever need to go to Kennedy Krieger, DO! It is worth every penny.
So, it all began with the OT (Occupational Therapist) asking Nick and I a lot of questions. I took his thick file of paperwork from past evals and from his speech group. I took a visual, a shirt he had chewed to literally shreds over the course of a day. Then the eval continued to include various developmental tests. She had to do things to test his pencil grip, use of scissors, ability to copy lines and shapes, stack blocks, etc. All of which he passed with flying colors. She then took him into their sensory room. I was a little nervous because he seemed like he might just take off and have fun, which would be nice any other day but we needed her to get an accurate example. He wouldn’t climb the ladder to the slide, he tried to avoid the spinning tire swing like the plague, and he LOVED the giant crash pad with a serious passion.
(For those who don’t know what a crash pad is, picture a giant pillow. BIG, like 3x 6 feet. Not only did they have several separate such crash pads, they had it in a giant bin. So you ran up a ramp, and crashed into the pads, by jumping or diving.)
The end result, before the whole evaluation was even over, yes sensory processing disorder. What does that mean for us? Not many changes really. She said we are on the ball with doing what he needs. We will be receiving a 15-20 page full report in the mail, which will include a “sensory diet” for us to follow. Now, a sensory diet is not a diet as in what you eat, but what you do every day to accommodate sensory needs, the proper “diet” of things to satisfy the senses. Some things include making him drink a thick drink through a straw (something we are supposed to do daily,) brushing his skin with a special tactile brush, or allowing a lot of rough play. He will need to start getting 1 hour of 1 on 1 occupational therapy a week, focusing solely on sensory input. Which means they don’t need to make him sit a certain way, or hold a pencil, or work with scissors, but they will make him spin, eat textured items, play with messy stuff, etc.
In many ways we are lucky. His sensory issues are not controling his motor skills. (For example he’s not so sensitive that he won’t hold a pencil well.) And while Sensory processing often goes hand in hand with Autism or Aspergers Blu doesn’t really have symptoms of either. He is a case where all of his issues are sensory related, or at least it seems that way now. So with therapy the specialist said that in 2-3 years you’d barely know he had it. He won’t be “cured” but he will be able to function normally or have a better sense of what to do to feel better.
Our life has been crazy lately, but mostly unrelated to this. And so this post has been in progress for over a week, while I found a few minutes at a time to type. Sorry about that! I know many of you were waiting to hear what happened.
I’m sure you have questions about all of this. Please ask away in the comment box below. And stay tuned for more from our lives as we accept abnormal, like how is a standard day for us?How did we begin to suspect SPD? Why did I say it’s only as official as it can get?? And what is our homeschool looking like this year? All posts I have planned to type in my spare moments.