Friday, September 4, 2009

Ramble ramble

The funny thing about PT is, I've always liked Eun, our PT, and I've always thought she was good at what she does. I've never questioned her methods until recently, and even when she first started using the weights on Finn's ankles, I didn't think much of it until the horrified comments started rolling in here. And reading in Disability is Natural how, often for the sake of therapy, we subject our children to things that cause them discomfort that we would never subject our "typical" children to. I've even thought to myself, where Finn is concerned, "No pain, no gain." And I just feel sad and a little ashamed now.

He's not a collection of problems to fix. And there have to be more natural methods of helping him gain strength and coordination, methods that can be integrated into his natural curiosity and motivation to play and explore. That's what I'm after. And that's what I believe we can accomplish on our own, as a family, without the intervention of professionals.

Michael and I are still talking about dropping EI services vs. keeping them. And in all honesty, the thought of giving it up does feel like a giant leap of faith on some level. And I hate that it feels that way. I hate that we've come to rely so heavily on the system, on the professionals provided to us by the system, that our faith in ourselves as parents is a little shaky.

In other news, Finn has recently cut a slew of teeth! Okay, maybe not a slew, but three, including a molar! This is his second batch of teeth, making it seven in all, and since he finally cut these last three, I have to say that he's been sleeping like . . . well, like a baby :) As in through the night most nights! Occasionally, he'll wake up once crying for me, but that I can totally deal with.


stephanie said...

I love how you said that Finn is not a collection of problems to fix. That is so true, these are our children, they are perfect. again you are right, Finn will walk, when Finn is ready to walk.sometimes and this is just my opinion and a feeling that I get sometimes during PT.But it seems that Em's PT who is a sweetie don't get me wrong, but I feel at times that she is more anxious to get Em crawling than I am. It almost seems like she has set a personal goal for herself. Em is on the verge of crawling and honestly it's all self taught, not because of PT. Whatever you decide Finn will do just fine. If you stop ET and feel like Finn does need it you can always start again.

Alisa said...

I really appreciate your thoughtfulness about how to approach EI therapy. I'm in the "appalled" camp about the weights and Finn crying during the session, btw. I often felt that the biggest benefit we got from therapy was that Lena learned that "learning" and "trying things" was fun. I also felt that she often needed some initial guidance on proper positioning so that she established that "muscle memory", analogous to an athlete working with a coach to change a swing or a pitch or something. Disability IS natural, so is ability. It doesn't mean that both can't benefit from some coaching to optimize. I think of Lena's therapists as personal trainers or coaches, and as such, I want them to be just as invested in motivating her to learn (by having FUN) as in proper technique.

Maybe you want to think about a different approach for PT, or maybe you want to cut everything back to once every 4 or 6 weeks and see how things go? Good luck with your decisions!

Lisa said...

So many of these things you are thinking about & writing about...well, I've been down that same road and have come to some conclusions of my own.

I am going to post an article I wrote for a local newsletter, which deals with our (positive, although fairly limited) experience with EI.

I'll also include commentary in a separate post on Bridget's blog. I always seem to leave long comments here...but this one would be way too long :)!

By the way, you are doing exactly what you should be doing: learning as you go, always thinking about what's best for Finn and your family & being reflective about all of it. You are willing to step back and see the whole picture. Keep it up!

Cate said...

I don't think it has to be all or nothing. You can keep going with EI, but you can pick and choose how you implement their suggestions. As much as I didn't like EI, they did have good suggestions and ideas sometimes, and it was good to have an objective person come in and see how things were going.

I know it would suck, but can you talk the weights over with Eun? Explain your concern?

as for other ways to develop strength, swimming? or yoga? I liked this book: Yoga for the Special Child

Evelyn Parham said...

When you mentioned the teeth, I was expecting more than got me on that one.

Do what you feel is best for your child and follow your heart. When you do that, then you will be at peace in whatever decision you make.

Best wishes and continued blessings!


JaybirdNWA said...

Lisa, just a word of advice: instead of giving up on EU completely, you may just back off to once a month so that you still have contact with a PT to monitor the progress (or lack thereof). I agree that PT can be done by the family and in my opinion should be. But to be honest with you, some families just aren't motivated enough to 'go it alone' without the guidance of a professional being involved on a regular basis. If you decide to take this step though, formulate you a plan of action before you close that door. It may even be a good idea to get some ideas from your current PT.

Michelle said...

Wow - weights, hey? I hadn't heard of that before.

I like the idea of stepping back, taking a therapy break...

Tara said...

I can relate to the leap of faith comment because that's how it felt when we started to homeschool.

Is it really a now or never kind of thing? Can you quit for awhile and restart if you want to?