Thursday, December 10, 2009

Developmental Assessment


Earlier this week, we took Aaron and Jada to see a developmental pediatrician. Think of it as an all-inclusive check-up as well as a second opinion. We really needed it, given the whirlwind of specialists our kids have been seeing, as well as the general consensus among them that our kids are just fine, even though we (who live with them and see them on a day-to-day basis) thought differently.

In fact, Jada would still benefit from speech therapy; she's so advanced in so many other facets that that can mask her communicative difficulties. For all the world, she's able to hang with others when it comes to the talking; but we see that she's still not quite right. So hopefully this diagnosis will help us lobby for the continuation of speech therapy services for Jada.

Aaron's issues are more behavioral; in fact, it's quite possible we'll cease speech therapy services for him. The developmental pediatrician said he has some defiance issues, which often work themselves out, but can lead to future diagnoses of ADHD and/or conduct disorder. So we'll be lobbying for additional help there as well.

Particularly for Amy, who fights the good fight for our kids in terms of services and insurance, these opinions are validating and somewhat relieving. Whether it is specialists, teachers, or friends, hearing that "oh, your kids are fine," while meant to be complimentary (as in, there is a stigma associated with kids needing extra help, but yours aren't in that category), is actually unhelpful and devaluing. It makes us wonder if we're crazy (are we the only ones who think our kids have problems?) or ornery (are we the mad parents whose sense of our kids' doom is inflated?).

What we are is two parents who saw something in our kids that led us to believe things weren't just going to work out, absent outside and professional help. And, having made that call, we (and by we, I really mean Amy) have made a number of calls, to get our kids what they need to be all they can be. And so the saga continues. Thanks for taking interest, and for cheering us on.
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