Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Tell Me What You Want, What You Really Really Want

Now that I've inserted the Spice Girls into your mental soundtrack with my subject line, I can talk about Teddy and speech therapy.

Teddy's been receiving speech therapy for three years, with intermittent breaks while we wait 2 months for insurance approval. (This is after we had to appeal to even receive speech therapy because our insurance initially denied the service for Teddy.) We see a wonderful person named Ms. Caitlyn, whom AJ, Teddy and I all adore.

At Teddy's appointment last week, she had a bucket of testing toys out to assess Teddy at his appointment last week because it's that time again to submit to the insurance gods for approval. (They aren't gods. They just think they are.) I'm not a big fan of the testing toys because it's so hard to convince Teddy to do what he's supposed to do on command, even if he understands the request. Teddy's not a fan either because every other toy in Ms. Caitlyn's room is far more exciting than the testing toys, especially the ones AJ is noisily playing with at any given moment.

Still, we all survived the testing, and I was surprised that Teddy received credit for demonstrating knowledge of a specific item 4 times (essentially picking the picture out of the group of pictures). He even touched the correct item the first time and then used eye contact. Now, how much of that is luck and how much is actual recognition might be a bit debatable ... but his actions seemed intentional and, by golly, he got the credit for the testing score.

Teddy scored at 1 year 9 months for his receptive communication, which is how much he comprehends of what is communicated to him. He scored at 1 year 3 months for his expressive communication, which is how much he can communicate. Now, I get that Teddy has a whopping 3.5 years of life experience under his belt, but I was pleasantly surprised with his scores. When Teddy was first assessed for speech therapy, he scored at less than 1 month. That means he's made tremendous progress in the past three years, and I'm confident he'll continue to learn more and different ways to understand his world and communicate his wants and needs.

These test results certainly don't define who Teddy is, but they do make me wonder, along with his recent request to play outside, how much Teddy tells me that I just don't catch because I'm not paying enough attention to his subtle requests.

Thanks in part to Teddy's awesome progress, and in part to Teddy's awesome speech therapist who always has something encouraging to say to Teddy (and me), I'm optimistic for all the times when Teddy will tell me what he wants, what he really really wants.

No comments:

Post a Comment