Let’s get physical
I am reviewing ”THE BOOK.” Parents of special needs kids know what I’m talking about. We all have some version of it. C’s is a huge binder that includes his medical history, therapy (occupational, physical, speech, and feeding) evals, specialists’ reports, lab results, and the like. I take the book to every doctor’s appointment and all our IEP meetings.
The book doesn’t get much traffic anymore, I’m happy to say, but mostly because we’re fairly comfortable with the status quo at the moment. We’ve done the bloodwork with the geneticist, the poop studies with the DAN doctor, and all the allergy testing we can find. We’re comfortable with the supplements he’s taking, and curing his allergies would require a move to the polar ice cap. He’s doing well, his health is holding steady, and he’s happy. We’ll leave things as they are for now.
Mostly these days I get the book off the shelf simply to add a progress report or an updated therapist evaluation. It’s like reading a somewhat disturbing report card about your kid that has nothing to do with who he really is or even how he’s really doing. C is one of those kids that presents in real life far differently than he appears on paper, and most people who read his history before actually meeting him are completely surprised by the child they actually meet.
So when I look back at an old physical therapy evaluation from when he was just shy of four years old, I am taken aback when I read the scores. “Percentile rank, less than 1%,” “age equivalent in months, 1 month,” and “rating, very poor.” This is what my child was? This is what my child is? How is he even walking around with a report like that just a few short years ago? C has learned to swing this year, and he’s proud of that, but he still comes home crying that he can’t run as fast as the other, bigger boys in his class. C thinks his shoes are the problem, and I’m looking at it from the other side being truly happy he runs less and less like Forrest Gump with each passing day.